If you were following the graduate show last week you’ll have heard of Joseph Hartley. On Wednesday he was awarded the BDC New Designer of the Year Award with judges commenting on his “passion for functionality and innovation”. I noticed him almost as soon as I entered the building; the apron screamed out ‘proud & passionate craftsman’ and I just knew he’d be worth looking out for. Then when I found out his work was inspired by the making of bread I knew he’d gain a few die hard fans in our small Folksy office. His work, well it speaks for itself…..
2 – Joseph Hartley, Three Dimensional Design, Manchester Metropolitan University
The work: My current work is a response to my ever growing interest in the similarities between design and food. I believe materials and ingredients are not so different, and an appropriate way to explore this notion was to make the most simplest and ancient of foods. I hand make naturally leavened bread with just flour, water and salt, and my collection of objects, intended to aid the making of bread, are hand made from similarly simple materials; wood, clay and cloth.
During this project I became rather taken with the phrase ‘wait until doubled in size’, which appears in every bread recipe I’ve ever read – so many of my objects double up in some way, the apron folds into a canvas sack to store the bread, so one object can assist the full cycle of making, storing, eating then making again.
The practice: I have loved every second of learning the skills needed to put this collection together, especially learning about and making bread. I thrive on making, and I think my work reflects that.
The process: My current collection contains 3 materials and many processes, all of them entirely appropriate for the jobs and pallet I required. The work contains simple materials put together and worked with simple techniques, this is intended to mirror the simple food that inspired the objects. Subtle proportions and the marriage of materials are at the heart of the work.
What next: The most important thing for me to do next is to establish a decent workshop in Manchester where I can design and manufacture my objects.
I am also as passionate about teaching as I am about making and often run workshops in conjunction with the university, this is something I intend to push forward with in the future.
At number 1 is jeweller Miya Hayes. Miya’s work was a joy to look at and I’ll admit to spending a fair bit of time turning the pieces over in my hand and admiring the craftsmanship. I also thought you guys would really like her work; the textures of the metals and colours of the resins. She’s a lovely Scots lass as well. Well done Miya, we think you’re great!
1 – Miya Hayes, Jewellery and Silversmithing, Edinburgh College of Art
The work: My jewellery is inspired by forms found in nature. I am drawn to the organic and irregular patterns of plants and seeds, the way they repeat to create intricate and delicate structures. I also draw inspiration from creatures under the sea; the movement that takes place with the current of the water is beautiful and creates interesting shapes.I enjoy using a combination of materials in my work especially resin, I like the way it brings in colour and a different texture to metal.
The practice: I found learning this craft practice very interesting and inspiring. I really enjoyed learning different techniques and figuring out how to combine metal with other materials. It has given me a basis of skills which I can now go on to improve and develop.
The process: I pierce out all of the patterns in my work by hand with a piercing saw. I make resin moulds from acetate to create the shapes and forms that I want. I use a lot of rivitting to connect my pieces together especially when using a combination of metal and resin as the resin needs to be cold connected to the metal.
What next: My future plans are to continue to design and make jewellery, I hope to exhibit in galleries and sell my work in shops. I would also like to travel in order to gain new inspiration for my work to allow it to develop.
Congratulations to all the graduates at New Designers, you made it very difficult to choose our Top Ten!