By Sophie Corfan.
Graduate show season is always one of my favorite times of the design calendar year. There’s so much enthusiasm in the air as a whole host of new talent emerges, ready to show off several industrious years of experimentation and learning. Here are just a few of the exciting standouts from the class of 2014.
Troels Flensted represents a new wave of experimental designers that has emerged over the past few years focusing on imaginative material manipulations. For example, his Poured Table is created out of waste material from the manufacture of other products. To make this table, leftover aqua resin is melted and poured into a mould resulting in a sporadic pattern that sits effortlessly on the minimalistic furniture piece. The table is part of a wider project from the Royal College of Art graduate, High Street Factory, which explores bringing production back to local communities through simple processes that can create bespoke items.
Central Saint Martins graduate Benjamin Matthews’ collection of ceramic forms features subtle geometric shapes created out of truncated cylinders. Entitled Absence and Presence, they are arranged in groupings of differing heights, hinting at architectural arrangements. The exteriors of these deceptively simple vessels feature a natural clay finish that contrasts beautifully with the warm glow and sheen of the glazed insides.
In her final project, Landscape of Gravity, Kirsi Enkovaara plays with marbling techniques to add unique patterns to pure and minimal white forms. In order to achieve this design, the vessels are created with a hole in the bottom and filled with water. Oil paint is then dropped on top. As the water drains away, gravity and the flow of the liquid dictate how the rich blue colour is applied, creating swirling and ethereal patterns that feel full of movement and life.
With so many talented graduates hitting the design scene this year and so much inspirational work on display at their shows, it’s difficult to choose just a few up and coming talents—but these are definitely my picks to watch for the next few years!
Images by Troels Flensted, Benjamin Matthews, Aava Anttinen and Kirsi Enkovaara.