Crafts Magazine Guide to COLLECT 2015 - page 32

based on material, interest in craft, in Victorian
things as well,’ he recalls. ‘What McQueen had
was an amazing ability to present ideas. The shows
were like the idea of
, where the
visual things, the staging, the music, the lighting,
everything comes together in this amazing 15
minutes. He was the complete master of it. That
I learned a lot from.’
More recently he has been concerned with work-
ing alongside artisans from developing countries
and, in his owns words, ‘using their traditional
techniques that are in a different way relevant to the
Western world.’ Results include the
Shadowy Chair
for Moroso, which has a shape redolent of beach
furniture from the 1920s, while its digitally drawn
colour pattern is woven by Senegalese craftsmen
using plastic threads around a steel frame. ‘On one
hand it’s a cultural exploration but they are also
commercial projects,’ says Boontje.
Over the years much of this work has gone on
against the backdrop of his teaching. He left his role
as head of design products at the Royal College of Art
in 2013 after four years because, he says: ‘It was get-
ting impossible to balance that and getting the
studio here. Now I couldn’t do it. We have too much
going on.’
Boontje’s work, along with the likes of Hella
Jongerius and Jurgen Bey, anticipated the recent
revival of interest in craft and ornament, showing it
was possible for a designer to use hand-making
processes and new technology while working cheek-
by-jowl with industry. In the process, he helped
break down the sense that these disciplines exist
in separate silos. His installation should prove to be
a hugely welcome addition to COLLECT.
Head to the following stands atCOLLECT
to seemore furnitureby contemporary
artists anddesigners:
Galerie SofieLachaert
Princess Chair
part of the
Happy Ever
installation at
Moroso,Milan, 2004
Rain Chair
designed for
Moroso, 2008
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