Thursday, May 17, 2012

Collect 2012

Hello! A bit late but I'm posting pictures of my weekend away in London last week. 

Prebooked our train tickets waaaaay in advance, so treated us to first class!
The Saatchi Gallery opened at 11 so we had a quick peek in the shops nearby on the Kings Road.

Couldn't believe quite what happened next, out of the blue an open top bus drove by full of Lifeguards throwing armfuls of knickers!  People rushed out of the shop to collect them up and follow them screaming down the road.  I was in the queue to pay so sent my husband out to fetch me a pair.  He came back with five pairs. Now I just need to find a size zero model to give them too! Found out later it was for Gilly Hicks who were opening a new store in London - so obviously hired a bus of half naked men to throw free knickers at people!

Lots of pants got caught in the trees!

Time for the exhibition! The reason we had gone that weekend was to see the exhibition COLLECT organised by the Crafts Council, at the Saatchi Gallery.  The exhibition brings together the most amazing makers and crafters from all over world, including work in so many mediums including ceramics, textiles, glass, wood & jewellery.

Once in we went in and headed straight to the work I really wanted to see. Louise Gardiner is an amazing textile artist and I love her witty figurative work and the sense of movement she creates in all her work.

I'd followed her making these pieces for the exhibition on her blog and seen the hours and hours of painstaking embroidery and applique detail that had gone into them, I was really looking forward to seeing them close up in real life.

The five canvases are just over a metre square, and the installation is called 'You Blow Me Away' which shows a fictitious tumbleweed, charting its development from a brittle bundle of twigs as it "rolls across the gallery and it picks up energy and colour and by the last one its an all-singing, all dancing, electric and crazy explosion".  Click on the photos below to see them larger.

Wow, they were amazing.

I stood for ages looking at all the tiny details of the embroidery and applique.  I really liked the variety of fabrics, this looked like shiny black pvc, and touches of neon.
And these bundle of threads, that become unfurled as the tumbleweed develops

To the wild threads as it finally explodes.

Louise did exceptionally well and won Gold in the Textiles category and overall Maker of The Year 2012, very well deserved. 

I thought you might like to see just a few of the other pieces also on Display.

 I loved this hiker, you might just be able to see the clothes are a map with lots of little pins.

Look at these necklaces, I think the bonnets are teeny tiny crochet.
I loved the inspiration board of this jewellery designer
Delicate cherries, so beautiful.

Would you believe we also managed to fit in going to the V&A, no pics sorry, the Tate Modern (brilliant Damian Hirst exhibition on at the moment), and afternoon tea at the Waldorf!  We worked out apart from the tea we were walking for nine hours!


I'll just end with mentioning this exhibition which they were in middle of setting up at the V&A which looks amazing. Its called Ballgowns British Glamour since 1950, (and runs from this coming weekend I think until next January), and the dresses are absolutely stunning, we managed to get a quick peek at some of them, and there are 60 ballgowns and evening dresses from the 1950s to present day previously worn by the Queen, Princess Diana, Liz Hurley on display.  If make it back to London again this year, I'll definitely be going for a look.  

If you have time feast your eyes on this video of the display by the V&A.

TTFN  xox


  1. I'm sorry I couldn't concentrate on the reveiw of the exhibition I was too busy crying with laughter about the bus load of naked men chucking knickers out of an open top bus!!!!

  2. Well what a publicity stunt that was with all those lifeguards!
    The work that went into the creation of the tumbleweed is just mind blowing. You certainly managed to pack in so much. Thanks for the info about the ball gown exhibition, I really like the sound of that.
    Lisa x

  3. Looks like you had an amazing weekend. I have never seen Louise Gardiner's work, thank you for introducing me to it. She is awesome: a very rare talent. I think that I am in love with your blog. I certainly enjoyed our trip to London. I am your newest follower, please accept my warm and humble invitation to visit and hopefully to follow me, too.
    Connie :)