Hand-crafted design from across Ireland shown in Ó Exhibition at Tent London
London Design Festival 2015: the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland invited more than 20 designers and craftspeople to contribute to its Ó exhibition at Tent London (+ slideshow).
With a focus on Ireland's heritage of craftsmanship, the exhibition – the council's fourth at LDF – brought together makers and designers from across the country to contribute work in stone, glass, ceramics, wood and textiles.
Dublin-based Aodh showed a table with four interlinking legs that formed a cross-shaped base, and a curve-backed chair, while fellow furniture designer Donna Bates launched her new wooden Ringhaddy armchair, upholstered in hand-loomed fabric.
Cillian O'Súilleabháin also showed a new piece of furniture, featuring a rectangular table joined to a chair.
BTU Studio exhibited a range of patterned glassware, created with a process similar to traditional Venetian glassblowing, while 31 Chapel Lane showed a range of organic linen materials made by weavers from across Ireland.
Dublin ceramics studio Arran St East created a range of hand-thrown glazed pots, in colours that apparently reference the city's fruit and vegetable market – including cabbage, potato, parsnip, lemon, pomegranate, and pink grapefruit.
Materials sourced from Ireland also feature in stone sculptor Helen O'Connell's bowls, which have been hand-crafted from Kilkenny limestone.
In addition to the individual pieces on display, the exhibition hosted "live micro-production spaces" which allowed visitors to observe craftspeople at work. A traditional handloom was used by Mourne Textiles to weave tweeds, while ceramicist Adam Frew used a potters wheel to hand-throw porcelain vessels.
The exhibition took place as part of Irish Design 2015 – a year-long initiative celebrating the country's design and craft output. The Ogham Wall at the V&A, designed by Grafton Architects in partnership with Graphic Relief, was also presented by ID2015, and the council exhibited a range of work in Milan this year as well.
"In Ireland, design and craft have long since been interfused, driven by necessity and enabled by the landscape and her natural resources," said Brian McGee, acting CEO of the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland.
"These traditions of craftsmanship, respect for materials and a strong sense of place inspire a new and emerging design philosophy and attitude as fresh talent enters the sector. We now have over 5,000 people working in the Irish craft sector, often located in the far off reaches of rural Ireland."
"Ó recognises our heritage and showcases the work of those that have merged it with contemporary design thinking," added curator and exhibition designer Steven McNamara.
Ó Design & Craft from Ireland was shown at Tent London, which ran from 24 to 27 September at the Old Truman Brewery in London, as part of London Design Festival 2015.
Also on display as part of Tent London's group of country showcases was Eataipei: a collection of Taiwanese lighting and homeware design displayed alongside a series of immersive eating experiences, and an exhibition of Norwegian furniture and homeware from past and present.