To celebrate its 40th birthday, The Crafts Council has launched a cracking online exhibition showcasing 40 of the most interesting pieces in its 1,400-strong collection and It’s Nice That was lucky enough to be invited to help create new works responding to some of those selections. We in turn reached out to illustrator (and former student of the month) Sophy Hollington and writer Michael Crowe to create three bespoke new narratives for the Miss Ramirez Chair, The Wedgwoodn’t Tureen and The Hand of Good, Hand of God glove. We were absolutely thrilled with the results and hope we have helped re-imagine some crafty classics.
Here are Michael’s three short stories.
The Miss Ramirez Chair
The beauty of the Miss Ramirez Chair helped to push-start what is now seen as a revolution. To celebrate both the chair’s design and the 6000th anniversary of the invention of the wheel, the Government launched “Project W”, an earnest attempt to attach wheels to anything wheel-free. Initially, great care was taken to find the most suitable, sensible sort of wheels for each thing – hand-carved wooden wheels for chess pieces, Monster Truck wheels for trees, Ferris wheels for skyscrapers, etc. Later it was found that people preferred a more laid back, “any wheels” approach, which packed more surprise and love. The project was and continues to be a terrific success. Lateness has been reduced by 80% (all shoes are now rollerskates) and everyone feels lighter, freer, smoother, as though their belongings aren’t quite so bolted down. Yes, we watch them roll away, but then we watch them roll right back.
Hand of Good, Hand of God
On your first day as a detective you toss your hat at the rack and it… Well well, what’s this? An unmarked parcel sat on your desk. Inside: another parcel. Inside: inside: these gloves. These peculiar gloves. You smile at them. Your smile holds and then gets smaller, smaller, infinitesimally small. You imagine dusting the box for a rather large number of fingerprints. Later. You wonder is this the start of my first case? You nod at your hat. You smell the gloves’ fingertips’ fingertips and a memory of a wave crashing ashore appears. A wave you saw as a child which stunned you. A wave which was identical to one you’d seen years earlier, when you were tiny. Splash for splash, identical. You didn’t tell anyone about that second wave, in case people would think you’d gone mad. They’d tell others, it would spread and spread… You jolt awake from these wavy thoughts: an odd knock, knuckling, spraying on your door.
The Wedgwoodn’t Tureen
I do something so stunningly athletic (a forward roll) that all Olympic gold medals on the planet are reassigned to me. Everyone – atheletes, collectors and inheritors alike – were all perfectly happy handing them over. I melt them all down and sculpt them into one huge Olympic gold medal. I give this symbol of success to you in a lavish, semi-awkward ceremony. Why? Because I think of you as the ultimate winner. It’s also your birthday. You tell me it’s terrifying, that you fear it will topple at any moment and crush you. I shoo it away and I hand you the Wedgwoodn’t Tureen instead. Your face lights up. You marvel at its complexity, its uncommon beauty, its pinkery. You tell me it’s far lovelier than the big ridiculous medal. I tell you it’s only on loan so don’t get too attached.
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