10 YEARS OF COLLECTIBLE DESIGN
BY JULIEN LOMBRAIL & LOÏC LE GAILLARD
It all began ten years ago in a carpenter’s workshop in South London with great aspirations. Yet, we never realized that we would achieve something of this magnitude. Carpenters Workshop Gallery now has three spaces located in London, Paris and New York. Carpenters Workshop Gallery’s has one ambition: to develop projects that transcend traditional categorisation in terms of art and design.
Back in 2006, we were childhood friends re-introduced by family who knew we were both hungry for a project to reflect our passion for art and design. Essentially, we wanted to establish a gallery that supported artists in creation, craftsmanship and innovation that transcended the boundaries of art and design.
DESIGN GUIDED BY EMOTION
From the very beginning, we have nurtured numerous historical references. Primitive art, for the way it has always blended sculpture and functionality, the decorative arts (Pierre Chareau, Pierre-Emile Legrain, Jean Royère, André Groult, Jean-Michel Frank, Diego Giacometti…).
We are sensitive to the approach of the “ensembliers” of the twenties and thirties, when veritable workshops were at the service of artists and creation. In addition, we appreciate that artisans can carry an artistic idea, like for example in 16th-17th century furniture making.
As we grew, more established artists approached us, but we lacked connections in the beginning. This lead us to Eindhoven Design Academy to form partnerships with promising young designers. At that time, our focus on functional sculpture was considered risky as overlapping the worlds of art and design had not been explored since the Art Deco artists of the 1920s. We wanted to revive this spirit of creativity and make it contemporary.
International attention snowballed thanks to art fairs such as Design Miami in the US and Basel as well as PAD London and Paris. Our success continued, and design reclaimed its place in the art world. The boom in galleries, fairs and magazines dedicated to the desirability and collectability of design reflects today’s changing perspectives.
Today’s designers create the same buzz as rock stars where hype follows their every move and new creation. It is an exciting time for creativity, and it is fantastic to know that Carpenters Workshop Gallery has played a major part in this over the last ten years. We have built our success and its status thanks to the collectable design market but its “culture”, the way of working and our DNA belong to the art world.
THE QUEST FOR EXCELLENCE
Today, we show the functional art of our artists, but we are also deeply involved in the production process and development of exceptional pieces, in very limited editions. We encourage a sculptural approach at first, and then as functional objects. Each of the pieces possess strength and energy, an “aura” that only art can have.
This naturally led us to create Carpenters Workshop | Roissy, our own space entirely dedicated to the research and development of collectible design, where we continuously strive for excellence in artisanal skills and fine materials. Today, we are proud of our 50-strong team and our 32 artists.
AN ENGAGEMENT CLOSE TO THE ARTISTS
Our portfolio of artists include an impressive list of the best in their field from around the world. They include Eindhoven alumnae Maarten Baas and Sebastian Brajkovic, H & F Campana from Brazil, French designers Mathieu Lehanneur, Vincent Dubourg and Dutch design duo Studio Job to name a few.
All of our artists are at different stages of their career and offer unique perspectives in the design field. Carpenters Workshop Gallery gives a platform to young designers like Morgane Tschiember, who recently joined, as well as to more established designers like Wendell Castle and Ingrid Donat, offering them the most innovating tools to create.
We hope that we will be able to keep promoting exclusive and major artistic projects. Our choices are guided by a quest for emotional, artistic and historic relevance; a relevance that is self-evident. We will keep supporting artists tirelessly because we do believe in their necessity and their legitimacy in the history of creation.