The C&TH Guide To London Craft Week 2021
Year after year, London Craft Week shines a light on some of the most exciting makers through a programme of workshops, experiences, pop-ups and exhibitions. The festival returns to capital for its 7th edition this October, with a special focus on sustainability. Here are some of this year’s highlights.
London Craft Week 2021: What’s On?
Why does craft make us happy? This is just one of the questions being explored in a series of events run by historic London development Chelsea Barracks. Other highlights include ‘The Contemporary Tapestry’, a panel event run by design studio Elicyon featuring Geraldine Larkin, Bernie De Le Cuona, Miles de Lange and Charu Gandhi, and a discussion on superyachts, private jets and architecture run by Winch Design. The Prince’s Foundation, meanwhile, is curating an exhibition at The Garrison Chapel focusing on the traditional arts, fashion and textiles, and building arts and craft. Various dates throughout the week
Silverlining will host a two-week exhibition at Chelsea Barracks showcasing its forward-thinking ideas, craftsmanship and finishes through hand sketches and jewel-like material. This will include demonstrations of how leatherwork, marquetry and carving are advanced by the latest science and technology. 4 – 17 October, 10am – 6pm
Unbeknown to each other, Lucille Lewin and Nicole Farhi left long careers in fashion to work as full-time sculptors. The pair have now joined forces to launch an exhibition that celebrates creativity and friendship, set to take place in Lewin’s beautiful Victorian school house in Marylebone. 4 – 10 October, 10am – 6pm
An exhibition curated by Brian Kennedy features exciting new work created by 15 craft artists during lockdown – drawn from galleries including Cavaliero Finn and jaggedart. 4 – 10 October, 12pm – 5pm
Crafts On Peel will be showcasing a modern approach to bamboo art, a traditional craft which lasts for thousands of years. Titled Imagine the Im’possibilities: Bamboo, the show brings together contemporary artisans from Asia who use bamboo, drawing attention to the texture, form and natural qualities of the material. 4 – 10 October
The Future of Fashion
Another key theme for 2021 is evolving fashion, delving into both intricate crafting processes and the broader questions surrounding its environmental impact.
Join Caroline Rush, chief executive of the British Fashion Council, and Leanne Elliott Young and Cattytay (actually called Cat Taylor), co-founders of the Institute of Digital Fashion, as they explore the future of the fashion industry. The insightful talk will look ahead to 2040 and imagine how far we will have come by then, plus reflect on how the BFC is already innovating in the world of eco-fashion. 6 October, 6 – 8pm
Abiola Onabule invites us into her workshop to learn about adire cloth made by Yoruba dyers in South Western Nigeria. Visitors will have the chance to hear more about Nigerian textile heritage and discuss ideas around cultural narratives woven within cloth. 10 October, 10.30am – 4.30pm
The Modern Artisan is a partnership between the Prince’s Foundation and YOOX Net-a-Porter designed to help reduce the fashion industry’s carbon footprint by promoting high-end textile skills among young craftsmen. Launched in 2020, the collection consists of luxury textiles produced by Italian and British students. A year on, London Craft Week will look at where the alumni are now with mood boards, video content and panel talks. 4 – 8 October
Milanese brands Serapian (luxury leather) and Azucena (furniture) present their iconic Catilina chair, which Serapian’s bespoke atelier has enhanced by hand. Elsewhere, interior designers Sibyl Colefax & John Fowler have worked with independent architectural sculptor Geoffrey Preston to create bespoke plasterwork for the festival.
Numerous makers showcased at London Craft Week are exploring more sustainable ways of crafting beautiful things.
Acclaimed London-based Tasmanian designer Brodie Neill revisits the indigenous timbers of Tasmania using hydrowood, a precious resource reclaimed from the island’s lakes. 4 – 10 October
The Mills Fabrica’s sustainability programme spotlights the innovations driving positive change in the fashion and food industries. Start-ups, concepts and brands will be highlighting new ways of making progress through demonstrations and workshops, showing transformations from raw materials to finished products. 9 October
For the full programme visit londoncraftweek.com
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