From shows to studio tours and meet-the-maker sessions, explore how materials are shaped by talented hands at this celebration of craft in the capital
The Future of Craft
12-15 May, 11am-6pm. Bargehouse, Oxo Tower Wharf, SE1 9PH
This ensemble event pulls together the work of collectives Future Icons and Design-Nation to deliver four floors of makers set against the raw industrial backdrop of Oxo Tower Wharf’s Bargehouse. See work across a diverse mix of styles and materials, including Bath-based Coucou Manou’s CNC-cut furniture and wall panels in bright colours and graphic patterns, and Japanese metal sculptress Kei Tominaga’s bent and folded sheet-metal pieces such as her origami-like spoons. The accompanying programme of talks, workshops and demonstrations delves deeper into the stories behind the objects.
Soft Containers: An Exploration of Textiles with Tal Drori
9-14 May, 10am-6pm. J&M Davidson, 104 Mount Street W1K 2TL
Luxury bag and accessories brand J&M Davidson welcomes the work of Tal Drori into its Mount Street store. The Israeli-born, UK-based maker is best known for her silk scarves, but what’s on show here demonstrates her move into three dimensions: colourful tufted vessels with playfully exaggerated features, whether faces – complete with long woollen pony-tails – or cartoonish brick walls. One of the containers on show has been specially commissioned by J&M Davidson and responds to the brand’s latest collection. Just try to resist touching them.
10-15 May, 11am-6pm. The New Craftsmen, 34 North Row, W1K 6DG
Mayfair gallery The New Craftsmen is celebrating its tenth anniversary with a special show dedicated to objects that are all plant-derived. From basket-making to wood-turning, all ten participants have a deep affiliation with the natural world: each was invited by the New Craftsmen to explore and respond to Kew Gardens’ Economic Botany Collections, which focus on how life around the world depends on plants. There is a strong emphasis on objects with a function rather than for purely decorative admiration – an invitation to use and enjoy them every day – from Lola Lely’s softly folded pendant light made from naturally dyed Japanese mulberry paper to trays and furniture by French artist Cyriaque Ambroise.
Until 15 May, 10am-6pm (except Sunday 10am-4pm). Gallery 5, Cromwell Place, 4 Cromwell Place SW7 2JE
In conjunction with Norwegian Crafts, Oslo-based gallery and art collective Pyton has taken over one of the galleries at South Kensington’s Cromwell Place to create a showcase for Norwegian design from the 20th century to the present. Highlights from contemporary makers include Sigve Knutson’s idiosyncratic, fishbone-like Gran birch table, carved-rock vases by Tron Meyer and John Skognes’ wood-burned ceramic tea-set; while Edwin Helseth’s no-nonsense 1960s pine furniture represents Norway’s own take on mid-century modern.
Pimlico Road Design District
Until 14 May. Various venues
Pimlico Road’s many design and antiques showrooms are no strangers to craftsmanship any time of the year, but for London Craft Week they are hosting smaller artisan makers to complement their own offering. Head to Pinch to see work from Sarah Maingot of Be Still Ceramics, whose simple terracotta forms feel right at home with the quiet luxury of Pinch’s furniture and lighting; fabric house de Le Cuona is showing the work of Nic Webb, whose expressive sculptures are made from fallen wood, which he carves, scorches, burns, soaks and stains to create dramatic objects. Meanwhile, Cox London is celebrating a new showroom with a panel talk on 12 May that includes Adam Hills of Retrouvius and gallerist Sarah Myerscough.
Earth and Water
Until 15 May, 11am-5pm. Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Embassy of Mexico, 8 Halkin Street SW1X 8LQ
Mexican craft seller Revolution of Forms has found a natural bedfellow with the Mexican Embassy, where pottery from Oaxaca will be celebrated during London Craft Week. Traditional methods combine with striking sculptural forms from makers Lucía Ocejo, Rrres, Colectivo 1050° and Onora. London-based Ocejo is presenting her new Aortic vessels, their double openings giving them a heart-like appearance, while Colectivo 1050° represents more than 50 potters and provides a platform for local artisans to sell their work further afield, working under the motto “together, we turn mud into beauty”.
Until 15 May, 10am-5.30pm. Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour, Lots Road, SW10 0XE
Now in its second year, Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour’s selling show brings together 17 high-calibre galleries including Oxford Ceramics Gallery, Cavaliero Finn and SEEDS, a roster that has been specially curated to highlight the cross-pollination between craft and interior design. See work from Loewe Craft Prize shortlisted Lu Bin at Ting-Ying Gallery, colourful stitched wall-hangings by Sanaa Gateja at 50 Golborne Gallery and intricate work in paper by Thurle Wright at Jaggedart. The Artefact galleries are complemented by activities across the Design Centre: makers from QEST (the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust) demonstrating their skills, showroom tours and a talks programme chaired by Material Matters podcaster Grant Gibson that includes radical knitter Freddie Robins and Chris Eckersley, designer and co-founder of Bodging Milano.