Amanda Cobbett HR 1

Artful Craft - Curated by Peter Randall-Page RA

Cel­e­brat­ing our re-launch with an exhi­bi­tion focus­ing on the nature of craft, art and design in the 21st cen­tu­ry, curat­ed by Peter Ran­dall-Page RA.

02/04/22 – 06/07/22
Opening Times
Sun–Tue, Closed
Wed–Sat, 11:00 – 17:00
Hyperrealist sculptures of lichen, works crafted from salmon skin, and monumental bells feature in a major exhibition of artists straddling the art-craft divide, curated by Peter Randall-Page RA and on show at MAKE Southwest, the crafts education charity formerly known as the Devon Guild of Craftsmen.

For Flora Pearson, MAKE Southwest Exhibitions Manager, Artful Craft reflects the regeneration taking place at the organisation and within craft itself:

“The debate about art and craft is eternal and has been famously championed by artists throughout history. It feels very timely that we are leaning into this debate at a time when our organisation is celebrating change. As advocates and champions of craft and traditional skills since the 1950s, we’ve seen plenty of trends one way or the other towards the functional or the non-functional, the political or non-political, and the traditional and the digital. The conclusion would have to be that art and craft together are a perfect microbiome; art without craft is the poorer for it, and likewise craft without art."

Artful Craft explores the nature of craft, art, and design in the 21st century addressing the labels, status, and boundaries commonly associated with it as well as the impact new technologies, such as digital design and rapid prototyping, have had on transforming how craft is now perceived.
Peter Randall-Page RA, MAKE Southwest president and renowned sculptor, curated Artful Craft and invited globally recognised artists who, like him, cross boundaries by blending fine art concepts with elements of traditional craft processes. These exhibitors are David Nash RA OBE; Susan Derges; Halima Cassell MBE; David Mach RA; Tavs Jorgensen; Sarah Gillespie; and Marcus Vergette.

Those exhibitors were invited to nominate an additional artist whose work had significance for them to take part in the exhibition. Those chosen include a mixture of early career artists, established artists who have been influential in some way, or someone whose work addresses the art/craft theme of the show. Nominated artists are Alice Dudgeon (nominated by David Nash); Amanda Cobbett (nominated by Sarah Gillespie); Amy Shelton (nominated by Susan Derges); Jonathan Keep (nominated by Tavs Jorgensen); and Andrea Liu (nominated by Peter Randall-Page).

Talking about his concept for the exhibition, Randall-Page says:

“My involvement with MAKE Southwest goes back more than 10 years and I was delighted to be asked to curate a show to celebrate the relaunch of this long established and important organisation.

As a sculptor I have chosen makers whose practice crosses boundaries between art and craft as does my own. The work in the show is diverse in both concepts and materials. All the artists I have chosen produce work which is both innovative and of exceptional quality, many of whom have international reputations.

I have asked each selected participant to nominate another artist, maker or designer of their choosing in order to broaden the scope of the show and in the process have been introduced to some exciting new practitioners.”

We are delighted to be engaging in this debate and to be working with Peter Randall-Page in bringing these incredible artists to the South West.