Glithero (a.k.a. Sarah van Gameren and Tim Simpson) are currently making my hands tingle. You know that feeling – maybe you’re watching someone knead some dough, or drag a paintbrush across a canvas, or pat a soft little rabbit on the head – it’s that unquenchable urge to reach out and get involved. Not only do these two Camden-based designers/craftspeople/all-round-innovators create phenomenally beautiful furniture, products and installations, much of the work is accompanied by excellent process films, which makes that whole “reach out and grab it” issue all the more pressing. Engrossing and inspirational.
This first film, Blueware Vases, shows how plants and UV light come together to create some excellent ceramic-ware. The process is based on an antiquated technique for botanical categorisation called “cyanotype”, and it uses photosensitive chemicals to develop impressions of specimens onto a surface. Weeds pulled from London pavements are pressed and dried before being delicately attached to a bit of pottery treated with said chemicals. Ultra-violet rays are then beamed onto the vase itself, leaving a unique print when the leaves are peeled away.
For Poured Bar Glithero drip layers of fast-hardening concrete onto a six metre long perfect surface. The high viscosity fluids coagulate to create a solid slab. This unique piece was a commissioned bar-top for the Corinthia Hotel, serving as resting place for the tipple of fabulous attendees of the 2011 Bafta Awards Party. Sweet!
And in a collaborative effort with the historic Baddeley Brothers’ print house (est. 1859), five expertly-crafted paper airplanes were created for the Wallpaper* Handmade exhibition in Milan last year. Glithero’s film is six minutes of process glory, with sludgy gold foil paint dripping through rollers and insightful glimpses into the inner workings of a paper-folding machine. What’s even better though is the narration – it features Baddeley Brothers’ printers talking about the trade they know best. There’s even a bit of singing.