Yesterday I was fortunate enough to spend the day visiting the New Designers exhibition in Islington, London. New Designers show-cases the work of recent university graduates from a variety of creative disciplines. Week 1 focusses on textiles, fashion, jewellery, glass and ceramics and textiles were extremely well represented, especially printed textiles. I was a little disappointed to only find one fellow felt-maker, a lovely artist from Rotterdam who has recently moved to Dublin, Marleen Haaften. She makes beautifully sheer hangings by needle-punching different fibres into an almost translucent backing fabric.
There were far too many individual artists for me to share them all here so these are a small selection of my favourites.
Andrew Sutherland’s textile monsters were derived from drawings he made as a child.
I was fascinated by Laura Ukstina’s modular approach to fashion, these pieces were inspired by Lego and she sees them as sections of a garment that can mixed and matched to create a variety of outfits depending on your mood.
Linda Anderson’s knitted pieces reminded my of sea anemone tentacles, I desperately wanted to run my fingers through them but thought better of it 😉
Lucy Turner’s knitted pieces also reminded me of the underwater world, coral formations this time, although it turned out they were inspired by Tuberculosis!
While this piece by Heather Ratliffe reminded me of days spent looking at fluorescing cells down a microscope in my student days. There was a UV lamp on the left that made sequins sewn along the edge of the fur fluoresce. A fascinating interpretation of some fairly standard dress-making materials.
If you can make the time, this show is worth a visit, granted there are a few pieces that I thought looked like they had been crafted by teenagers, but given that most of the work was produced by young people I was enormously impressed by the very high standard of the work.