London Craft Week makes its debut

LONDON CRAFT WEEK, a brand new initiative that positions makers centre stage of the world’s creative capital will open on Wednesday, 6 May 2015. The event will bring together an unparalleled public programme celebrating craftsmanship across the city, where hidden spaces and little-known makers will be revealed alongside celebrated galleries and luxury brands. Shining a spotlight on centuries-old skills and exciting new talent.

For the inaugural year, central locations such as Mayfair and Bloomsbury will be the primary focus; historical hubs of industry and craftsmanship, which continue to inspire new examples of creativity and skill in making.

Set up as a new independent non-profit initiative supported by founding partner Vacheron Constantin and strategic partners the Mayor of London, the Crafts Council, Walpole British Luxury and the Heritage Crafts Association, LONDON CRAFT WEEK will run from 6-10 May and will continue to be an annual event showcasing exceptional and innovative British and international craftsmanship.

Guy Salter, Founder & Chairman of London Craft Week, said:

“London has long had a Fashion Week and a Design Festival. From 2015, it will have the equivalent for the craft sector: LONDON CRAFT WEEK. Featuring the artistic flair, painstaking skills and raw talent of exceptional craftsmanship and, as a result, attracting an ever-increasing quality and volume of collectors and customers.”

LONDON CRAFT WEEK will challenge the perceptions of craft and showcase the artistic and creative ingenuity of craftsmen and makers through a ‘seeing is believing’ programme of openings, activities, demonstrations and exhibitions. Themed as a discovery of hidden crafts and the spaces in which they are created, the week will allow makers to show their skills and share their knowledge. Visitors will have special access to studios and workshops, galleries and shops, and will be able to engage first-hand with the process of making in a variety of different ways to better understand the context of how things are made and why they are so sought after. In addition, a wide and growing number of partners have come together to augment the programme with their own activities. These include headline show COLLECT, the V&A, Crafted, Saville Row, Contemporary Applied Arts as well as many makers with open studios.

The inaugural programme has been carefully curated in order to adequately communicate the quality and magic of exceptional craftsmanship, in entertaining and enjoyable ways, focusing on a few core elements, each designed to engage with a particular audience. The full programme will be available on 1st February. Highlights include demonstrations at Asprey, talks hosted at the New Craftsmen, studios opened at Cockpit Arts and workshops opened at the Goldsmiths’ Centre.

Ed Vaizey, Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy, said:

“London Craft Week will provide an essential platform for the 35,000 craftsmen currently working in the UK who turn over £1 billion to showcase their skills and demonstrate globally why London is the world’s creative capital. The event will feature the best makers and ensure that the skills they employ are valued for innovation, quality and prestige.”