Tord Boontje

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The Lacemaker

The Lacemaker

A collection of new work where the conventional expectations of what lace might be are overturned.

With lace, all the value is invested in the labour and so it seemed a good idea to start working with cheap materials. But also, by changing the material you can change the references. 

Works in the exhibition include a dramatic black sofa that emerges from a large three-dimensional web-like structure of bound and knotted Aramide and Dynema fibres. The sofa is one example where traditional craft skills have been employed while substituting unorthodox materials.

Others are a curtain composed in a random pattern of tangled flora and a selection of lighting designs all constructed from natural raffia. Some of the more delicate works are items of jewellery, such as necklaces and a hairpiece, and a selection of test samples made in a variety of natural materials, including grass.

The Lacemaker
The Lacemaker The Lacemaker

Inspiration for this body of work came from an invitation by the Design Centre at the University of Philadelphia to respond to their historic Quaker Lace Company collection and to make work for an exhibition entitled Lace in Translation held at the Centre in early 2010.

Tord spent 3 days immersed in the Centre’s archives and the resulting new works contain quotes from the original lace articles that attracted his attention.

The Lacemaker The Lacemaker The Lacemaker
The Lacemaker
The Lacemaker
The Lacemaker The Lacemaker

Photography by Phil Sayer