Speakers at the Crafts Workshop: part one

 Welcome to presentations from the Crafts and Sustainability Workshop

The workshop structure was intended to be a little bit like the film “Love Actually”:  by compiling a series of vignettes (of practices, ideas, approaches, ideologies), by coming at the subject from a variety of different points we can see if we can paint an emerging picture of crafts and sustainability.

Of course in a structure like this, and in one day, there are certain limits, time being one of them.  But to make a cohesive picture you need lots of detail.  Some of this detail we were aware that we couldn’t – for one reason or another – furnish on the day.  We were light on the design side of Applied Arts, for example; galleries and stockists (what Kathryn Hearne calls the “gatekeepers”) were not there; there might be an issue of class or educational opportunity to consider – and see the forums in a couple of weeks to read Clare Moloney’s thoughts on this aspect.  One group we did try to represent – by setting them a place at the table – was that of future generations (this is a direct idea-steal from Joanna Macy).

The beauty of having many different points of view in a meeting like this is that it allows us to properly interrogate our own viewpoints or ideologies, make sure we’re doing what we say on our own tin (or pot, or bottle, or design object).  It was not our intention on this day workshop to come to a unified front on anything.  Rather, we wanted to sketch out a terrain which can be challenged, broadened, one which can include many different practices and ologies, but one which is still robust enough to be able to articulate and defend itself.  So, pleasant and heartening as it was to make new connections and have our views paid attention to, we also tried to maintain one critical eye on the proceedings.  Because whatever we do in this arena needs to stand up to scrutiny, needs to be robust and truthful.

But whilst we needed to have a critical eye, I also hope we made some new connections, and started to build a network.

I hope you enjoy these presentations:  and please, let us know what you think.


First Presentation                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Jane Hope talks about her research and experiences with Fair Trade and ethical mining in Bolivia

 Second Presentation                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Clare Moloney, Project Manager for River and Cloth, talks about the project

(Please go on to Speakers Part two)