Fishink at the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2015 Pt 2
Hi there. I’m back with part two of my trip to this year’s Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair.
I don’t know if it was just me, or possibly what’s catching my eye lately, but there was a lot of very interesting ceramics this year. Let’s start with Kate Welton and her thrown and press-moulded pieces, with slip decoration inspired by traditional gardening tools and processes. I thought her mark-making was, in part, quite Japanese in flavour.
Beautifully frail and linear decorated porcelain from Justine Allison.
A show stopping favourite and fellow lurcher owner Ruth Green with some bold but friendly prints.
Louise Gardiner creates intricate and colourful art pieces and printed silk scarves. Her lavish stand certainly attracted a lot of attention. Beautiful details and colour explosions.
Talking to Julia Linstead about her finely sandblasted glassware, was an education in itself. Not only was she a remarkable craftswoman when it came to sculpting the glass into a variety of beautiful forms, she was also very knowledgeable about the creatures and wildlife she chose to adorn her work. She told me that a marine biologist had commented on how accurate her tiny sea-life were and was then equally impressed when Julia could name them in Latin and talk at length about their habits and life-cycle! A multi talented designer indeed. I really like the flow and 3-D qualities in her work.
I loved the green of this seahorse vase. I thought it would look very much at home in some underwater, sea-weedy environment.
One of the best stories and stands this year had to be that of Home Front Vintage.
On her website Sarah Jane says ” WW2 British silk escape maps were the creation of Clayton Hutton, an eccentric MI9 British Army Officer who was the genius behind so many WW2 escape and evasion aids which are still in use today. Hutton came up with the idea after he persuaded the British Museum to collect in the region of fifty true WW1 escape stories from various second hand bookshops in Bloomsbury. He then had them delivered to the sixth form at Rugby School and asked the pupils to read the books and summarise the key elements. The one item that constantly stood out from the rest was an escape map.
Hutton approached Bartholomew’s, a world famous map making company, and persuaded them to waive their copyright on maps for the war effort. Hutton had the maps printed onto pure silk; the ideal material for an escape map as silk is quiet, rustle free and easy to hide or sew inside clothing. The maps were issued to the RAF and Special Forces throughout WW2 and beyond and even smuggled into prisoner of war camps; helping our troops find their way home. ”
Sarah was lucky enough to track down this vintage find just a few days before the entire hoard was due to be pulped ! She managed to talk the military into allowing her to re-utilise the lucky find and the rest … quite literally…is history!
What a fabulous collection of ties, lampshades, buttons etc… more on her website too.
I enjoyed seeing these vintage-feel textiles too. Sarah Waterhouse had some eye-catching hand screen-printed, sustainable home textiles. Beautifully printed onto Hemp and Cotton fabrics using organic inks. Those cushions look very cosy.
Another familiar face was that of Janine Partington, with her quirky array of enamelled characters, vessels and wall panels. Her new decorated vases below, looked amazing with their yellow flora poking out.
I hope you enjoyed seeing some more of this years designers, check in on Friday for the final creative instalment. Thanks.