LONDON CRAFT WEEK, a brand new initiative that positions makers centre stage of the world’s creative capital will open on Wednesday, 6 May and run through to 10 May 2015. This new annual event will showcase exceptional craftsmanship through a journey of discovery programme featuring hidden workshops, lesser known makers will be revealed alongside famous shops, galleries and luxury brands, shining a spotlight on centuries-old skills and exciting new talent.
“London has long had a Fashion Week and a Design Festival. From 2015, it will have the equivalent for the craft sector: LONDON CRAFT WEEK. Featuring the artistic flair, painstaking skills and raw talent of exceptional craftsmanship and, as a result, attracting an ever-increasing quality and volume of collectors and customers.” Guy Salter, Founder & Chairman of London Craft Week.
The inaugural London Craft week features an impressive line-up of demonstrations at major stores including Fortnum & Mason, Fenwick, and Selfridges, as well as key London hubs of style and creativity SOANE Britain, Mulberry, and Asprey. Prestigious institutions will take part, such as the Wellcome Trust (with Heatherwick Studio), the British Library, and the Victoria & Albert Museum, who with the Crafts Council will present their partnership exhibition ‘What is Luxury?’, and will also host the Heritage Crafts Association’s ‘A Place for Craft’ conference. The Crafts Council will also present COLLECT: The International Art Fair for Contemporary Objects, held at the Saatchi Gallery.
Mayfair, home to some of the world’s most renowned luxury brands that are celebrated for craftsmanship and quality will provide many of the programme’s initiatives this year. The New Craftsmen will be showcasing ‘Made of Mayfair’ – a project for which seven makers have delved into the history of the area to produce a new body of work.
Founding Partner Vacheron Constantin will have live demonstrations of watchmaking and hand-engraving in their Bond Street boutique. Crafted at Fortnum & Mason will feature Walpole’s Crafted alumni and its class of 2014 through demonstrations and talks. Bond Street stalwarts ETRO will run demonstrations by Serge Maury, renowned for his intricate hand-painted paisley designs and DAKS will accommodate a small power loom from the London Cloth Company in their Central London store to give demonstrations of scarf weaving. A cutter and coat maker at Kathryn Sargent Bespoke Tailoring will ‘deconstruct the suit’ by demonstrating pattern crafting and hand tailoring at Kathryn’s Atelier on the first floor of No.6 Brook Street with hand embroidery demonstrations by Hawthorne and Heaney.
Other highlights of the programme include glass blowing demonstrations by innovative and influential makers on the British glass scene at London Glass Blowing. At The Wellcome Trust there will be tours of the Collection and talks by glass artists Max Lamb and John Lewis as well as the Heatherwick architectural studio to discuss their spectacular Bleigiessen sculpture collaboration that fills a 30 metre high vertical space and comprises 150,000 specially processed glass spheres suspended on almost one million metres of fine stainless steel wire.
Founded on the ethos of making, LONDON CRAFT WEEK aims to introduce the talent, people and techniques behind beautifully made things to a wider audience. They will be able to experience craft not just as static branded objects in smart shops but understand the context of how they were made, why they are special and even have a try themselves.
LONDON CRAFT WEEK is independent, not-for-profit and supported by founding partner Vacheron Constantin and strategic partners the Mayor of London, the Crafts Council, Walpole and the Heritage Crafts Association.
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