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  • Inside Out, Platform Gallery, September 2015. Photo: Agnese Sanvito

Inside Out

An exhibition of furniture from the Crafts Council Collection

Inside Out: furniture from the Crafts Council Collection first launched as a partnership exhibition with Platform Gallery at Habitat before going on tour.

Inside Out features 24 pieces from the Crafts Council’s Collection representing significant makers from four decades of the Collection. The earliest piece is Chair by Alan Peters OBE made in 1978 and the most recent Sarah Kay’s Helga chair from 2007 with work by Richard La-Trobe Bateman, Floris van den Broeke, Tom Dixon, Tomoko Azumi and Wales & Wales representing furniture through the 80s, 90s and the 2000s. 

Furniture making traditionally considered function and ergonomics yet some of these pieces ignore such considerations including Fred Baier’s extraordinary display unit Megatron – Whatnot – Etagère (1985) made using then pioneering free-form bending and Michael Anastassiades’ playful Bedside Table (1996) made of industrial felt and able to muffle an alarm clock if more sleep is required.

The pieces cover a range of materials including recycled plastic bottles, corrugated cardboard, acrylic, ash, glass fibre, oak and metal with an equally diverse number of processes on display. 

The exhibition offers visitors a unique insight into these pieces and their makers through accompanying archival material, maquettes and drawings. In-gallery interpretation will allow visitors to: hear five oral histories with Tom Dixon, Fred Baier, Richard La Trobe-Bateman, Floris van den Broecke, Jim Partridge courtesy of the British Library’s National Life Stories Crafts Lives project: and watch a film of Tomoko Azumi (a Uniform commissioned by the Crafts Council) and excerpts from Jeremy Broun’s film Alan Peters – The Makers’ Maker.

Inside Out alludes to the outdoor and indoor dual nature of furniture, the fact that some furniture has interior spaces and finally how the exhibition is offering a glimpse into the Crafts Council’s Collection.  

Megatron - Whatnot - Etager, Fred Baier, 1985, Crafts Council Collection W64. Photo Todd-White Art Photography