Craft and design at Number 10

Uploaded by dcms on 24.02.2012

>> JANICE BLACKBURN: Craft and design is enormously important. If you look back in history at
how wonderful our furniture, our silver, the decorative arts are, we have a great tradition
and our art colleges are producing outstanding designers, outstanding contemporary craftspeople.
But they are less known than our contemporary artists and I have a mission, if you like,
to change this. Some of the highlights must include the two wonderful glass vessels behind
me by Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby. They are designers well known for designing the
interior of the Stella McCartney shops and also, most importantly and relevant, they
designed the Olympic Torch. We have Annabel Johnson, who has made wonderful pots depicting
the history, and a very accurate history, of Downing Street; Brendan Jamison, a young
artist from Northern Ireland who has made a replica of the front door of Number 10 sculpted
entirely in sugar cubes. And then we have Charlotte Hodes, who was the artist in residence
for the first time at the Wallace Collection and she is really an etcher but she's done
these beautiful paper cuts and pots.
>> MISS ANNABEL DEE: I'm a ceramicist, based in Leigh-on-Sea in Essex. I graduated three
years ago from Central Saint Martin's. This vessel is called If That Door Could Speak.
Number 10 Downing Street is one of the most iconic addresses and buildings in England
and I wanted to create a narrative on that fact and document it on a ceramic piece. I
mean it's got the iconic Number 10 door and everything, the ever-present policeman. And
then also it's got other historical, political people, such as Margaret Thatcher, Major,
Blair, Brown and Cameron and, of course, the cat. I always like to provide sort of a humorous
sort of narrative and I think that comes across quite well in my pots because they're a bit
tongue in cheek and a bit fun, really. This one is called Number 10 and it's based on
the building rather than the people of Downing Street as the other one. Again it's got the
door. It mixes photographs that I've taken myself and pen and ink drawings. This one
also has the map, the blueprint of Downing Street from 1735, which was when Sir Robert
Walpole, the first Prime Minister, changed Downing Street to the way it is today. I think
it's very important that Downing Street has decided to have a contemporary craft exhibition
here. There's just so many great pieces of work here such as the Lowry, and I just think
it's great to have the opportunity for emerging artists to be displayed amongst the greats
of England.