Categories DesignPosted on

Christmas in July Part 3: Contemporary Applied Arts

SEEN needs no second bidding to go and look at beautiful pieces of craft. The premises of the CAA in Bankside (handily near Tate Modern) contains a breathtaking variety of exquisitely made designs from the tiniest piece of jewellery to hand-woven rugs to striking and unusual furniture.

Photography by Jayne Lloyd for Contemporary Applied Arts
Photography by Jayne Lloyd for Contemporary Applied Arts

One half of the light and airy space is dedicated to makers and craftspeople who sell their wares and the other half is devoted to exhibitions with educational institutions who liaise closely with the CAA as students enter the workplace.

Photography by Jayne Lloyd for Contemporary Applied Arts
Photography by Jayne Lloyd for Contemporary Applied Arts

SEEN was there specifically to look at the Present Collect cohort of work, though of course everything on display at CAA is worthy of interest. With a strong emphasis on craftsmanship, pieces are selected by a group of makers who understand the marketplace and history of craft. It’s worth noting here that CAA showcases work that crosses boundaries; many of the pieces would qualify as art objects as well as functional objects.


It was indeed difficult to pick out a few favourites from amongst the stunning selections on show, but SEEN’s acquisitive nature was powerfully awakened by Hugh Miller’s Coffee set, which was simple and beautiful in its Japanese style; Lara Scobie’s linear inlaid ceramic vessels surprised in their delicacy; Gizella K Warburton’s vessels also amazed in their lightness, but Isabelle Busnell’s silicone jewellery, at once playful and robust, were the stars of the show for me.


Contemporary Applied Arts
89 Southwark Street

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