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Bark furniture Day FOUR

Our Stand ..
The Farmiloe Building begins to take shape…

After a quick brunch in Walthamstow with family we headed back to the Farmiloe to finish setting up our stand. There’s nothing quite like being in the physical space for knowing where everything should go. So, as our carefully drawn up floorplan bit the dust, it was a case of juggling things around until it looked just right. Two hours later we were able to leave, feeling more than happy with the final layout.

A more relaxing day tomorrow before show time on Tuesday…
You can see Bark Furniture at Clerkenwell Design week in the Farmiloe Building 22-24 May 2012.

Stanley (the inspiration behind the Bark name) gives Clerkenwell Design Week his seal of approval

Anthony Dickens – world launch: Tekio Clerkenwell Design week 2012

Tekio is a modular lighting system inspired after Dickens’ travels to the Far East. Paper lanterns were invented in China and used extensively at festivals in Japan. The American-Japanese designer Isamu Noguchi is credited with bringing them to the attention of the West in the 1930s. Taking the idea of the traditional Japanese paper lantern into a new, design-led dimension, Tekio’s innovation lies in its flexibility: inside each paper tube is a frame that can be bent from straight to 90° and locked into any desired shape. You Can see Anthony Dickens at Clerkenwell Design week in the Farmiloe Building 22-24 May 2012.

Bark Furniture Blog Day THREE.

Although we have exhibited at Clerkenwell Design Week before, this is the first time we have had a stand in the Farmiloe Building. And the contrast between here and the House of Detention (where we were last year) couldn’t be greater. Last year we nearly killed ourselves carrying eight huge pieces of furniture and their respective stands down 300-year old, narrow, winding staircases into a damp crypt. This year our space is at ground level and just yards from where we were able to park the van. Yay!
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Bark Furniture Blog Day TWO


Playing with the big boys

Friday, May 18
Just arrived in London and it’s 1.15 in the morning! Not quite how we planned it but at least we’re here and in one piece.

Another early start gave us the chance to give the display stand a lick of paint before wrapping and packing everything into the van. We tend to pack everything in the adjacent workshop as it is less dusty. It is also home to Jonathan’s 1957 Ford Fairlane station wagon, the inspiration for the new Kustom Collection.

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Bark Furniture Blog Day ONE.


Thursday, May 17

Today was our last full day in the workshop before heading to London to set up for Clerkenwell Design Week. With a seemingly endless To-Do list we were up at the crack of dawn to get everything done on time. By 9am we had already established there was no surf – something of a blessing as it meant there were no distractions/excuses!!
Beacon Coffee Table

First on the list was the final coat of oil on the new Beacon Coffee Table and Kustom Mirror. While that was drying we had to make a display stand for the new Acorn Bookcase and Kustom Mirror.

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G&T by Bethan Gray Launch at Clerkenwell Design Week – 22-24 May 2012


G&T by Bethan Gray is debuting at the Farmiloe Building during Clerkenwell Design Week .
G&T is a newly established design collaboration between Bethan Gray, and Thomas Turner.

G&T focuses exclusively on using intriguing and seductive combinations of natural materials, adding exciting and elegant detail to create contemporary, yet timeless families of beautiful products. The brands design and development is focused on nurturing highly skilled and motivated manufacturers, who are passionate about their product, and take personal pride in their craftsmanship.

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Hubbawelcome show preview Clerkenwell Design Week May 22nd


Hubbawelcome is a new collective of contemporary artists based in East London, formed by Chris Mundy and Greg Lockhart. Their work is inspired by online culture and the psychology of growing up in the information age.

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Herman Miller Pop Up Shop in New York.

A Herman Miller Pop Up Shop has opened in New York City’s Soho neighborhood.
The 6,000 square foot space is exhibiting the recently announced Herman Miller Collection which aims to serve both consumer and commercial furniture needs. See more details and images over at PSFK.Com

Anthony Hartley to show his Cable Collection


Anthony Hartley will be showing his Cable Collection at at The Other Art Fair from May 10th – May 13th 2012.

The pieces that make up the Cable Collection are made from clean and simple MDF or ply template shapes, sprayed in Hartley’s trademark strong colour palette. The innovation comes in the joining of the templates, which uses multicolored cable ties to secure them, and which can be easily assembled without tools. Customers can order a matching set, a single base colour with a mix of accents, or a completely custom colorway.

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Bahaus: Art as Life at The Barbican

Erich Consemüller Lis Beyer or Ise gropius sitting in the B3 Club Chair by Marcel Breuer, and wearing a mask by Oskar Schlemmer and dress fabric by Lis Beyer, c.1927 Copyright Estate Erich Consemüller

Combinatory Letters, Josef Albers, c.1928

3rd May – 12th August

Exploring the world’s most famous modern art and design school, Bauhaus: Art as Life at the Barbican is the biggest Bauhaus exhibition in the UK for over 40 years.

A driving force in modernism, the Bauhaus sought to change society in the aftermath of World War I and find a new way of living. The exhibition presents the pioneering and diverse artistic production that makes up the school’s turbulent fourteen year history from 1919 to 1933. It delves into the subjects at the heart of the Bauhaus – art, design, people, society and culture.
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Non-Alphabetical Order JAN MAARTEN VOSKUIL at Art Sensus Private View Thursday 3rd May

Art Sensus will introduce Dutch artist Jan Maarten Voskuil to London in an exhibition titled Non-Alphabetical Order. On display will be his latest series of paintings, 4 Squeezed Squares, Dynamic Monochromes and The Alphabet of Silly Colours. These bodies of work all deconstruct painting itself, in both a consistent and elaborate way. They rationally emphasise the formal aspects of colour, size and deformation, whilst embodying dynamism and sensuality.

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Pernilla + Asif : The Coca Cola Beatbox


Coca-Cola and designers Pernilla Ohrstedt and Asif Khan present The Coca-Cola Beatbox Sound Lab from 2nd – 6thMay 2012 ahead of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games

Coca-Cola has revealed that it is to give members of the public a sneak preview of the innovative sound technology being developed for The Coca-Cola Beatbox, its iconic Olympic Park pavilion, by the critically acclaimed London practice, Pernilla & Asif.

From Wednesday 2nd May to Sunday 6thMay, designers Pernilla Ohrstedt and Asif Khan will install one of their sound technicians in a pop-up sound lab in Front Room, the Central London space at St Martins Lane. Ohrstedt and Khan will invite visitors to help them test one of 230 five metre-long sound-emitting cushions being developed for the Coca-Cola Beatbox ahead of London 2012.
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Bethan Gray Reporting for Despoke from Salone del Mobile in Milan.


Great News Bethan Gray has agreed to report back from Milan for Despoke she’ll be sending in regular images and info on all the sights and products that catch her eye.

Bethan is out in Milan to launch a new chair that she designed with Italian manufacturer MALINA .
The Italian manufacturer produces chairs for retailers such as Heals & Habitat and also for the contract market. You can find them at the Fiera in HALL 6, STAND F36.

Bethan Gray
Welsh born Bethan Gray is best known for her liveable, honest, and warm designs. She first came into recognition when she was awarded the Habitat Innovation Award by Tom Dixon at New Designers in 1998. Working closely with Matthew Hilton during his residence at Habitat, Bethan was made Head of Furniture Design before embarking on setting up her own studio in 2008.

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INPUT at Coexistence: Full Programme Announced Tomoko Azumi, Max Fraser, William Knight confirmed as speakers.



British design brand MARK are taking over Coexistence’s showroom from March 16th April 2nd with an exhibition and series of events called INPUT which will also see the launch of the new Verso chair by Tomoko Azumi and Bosco II sofas and benches by Gala Wright.

The exhibition, in collaboration with Danish textiles company Kvadrat, will be a fascinating insight into how a new piece of furniture is designed and made, through four exhibits based on MARK’s products. Tomoko Azumi’s new Verso chair is shown through every step of the design process from the original briefing of the designer, through sketches and tiny scale models to the first production models, showing all the thinking that goes into every detail. Gala Wright’s Arris and Bosco II ranges are used to demonstrate the skills of the makers that make fine wooden furniture using films and photographs. There will also be a tower of materials, showing the many natural and man-made materials that go into a modern sofa, where these come from, how they are processed, and how sustainable they are. Finally, Dylan Freeth’s Iso table shows us the collaborative nature of design – the web of conversations and connections that is woven through the development of each new product.

From 19th – 23rd March there will be a number of talks by MARK designers, collaborators and friends including Tomoko Azumi, Max Fraser, William Knight, Kvadrat’s Thomas Ellingsøe and MARK’s founders Anna Hart and John Miller. The full programme and details on how to book are on the exhibitions and events page of the MARK website,

Stuart Semple Its hard to be a Saint in this City at The Space Hong Kong

FREAK Pepperskin coated polyurethane foam Approx 90 x 170 x 120 cm From an edition of 3

CREEP Pepperskin coated polyurethane foam Approx 150 x 150 x 90 cm From an edition of 3


Pepperskin coated polyurethane foam Approx 120 x 100 x 100 cm From an edition of 3

17th February – 16th March 2012

A new series of works on paper, large scale paintings, foam sculptures and modified readymades.

Against the atmospheric backdrop of a creepy teen supernatural TV show, Semple weaves a story of a loser’s prayer to be more than human, to control and dominate his environment. Whilst doing so he makes a clear judgment over humankind’s longings for fame and fortune or triumph over mass-media culture. Rather like anti-anthems for teenage weirdos, these new works are firmly dedicated to the loner kids, like Semple, who only had their dreams to get them through the day.

The works depict a multi-faceted, pick and choose, hybrid environment, which visually is totally defined by mass culture and pop. This space is inhabited by all of us and defined by our choices, desires and preferences. The work critiques the ‘us-and-them’ separateness that comes out of this disparity. Any visual result of that external cornucopia of ‘stuff’ can only be in the past, an advertising campaign, music video or product is always pre-conceived. The only element that is truly of the moment is nature itself, and humanity is the most present force of that in this particular context. Therefore the new work addresses the felt emotion of separateness humankind faces whilst living in a consumerist pop-culture society.

Semple has always used text within his work believing it opens up a gigantic palette and vocabulary that includes almost every object and emotion in existence, “You can say so much with a few words that would be almost impossible to depict pictorially, and that awards me a huge amount of freedom”. The text elements often reference song lyrics that the artist found solace in during his own turbulent and often lonely adolescence. Through the written form voices of Placebo, Radiohead, Nirvana, REM and Echo and the Bunnymen provide a cerebral soundtrack for the viewer. Inside enigmatic anagrams and word-searches mini narratives hide a personal emotionality.

Stuart’s use of retro ‘SMEG’ fridges as a surface, coupled with his gestural modification of the objects themselves, continues his ongoing dialogue with art history, in this case specifically Koons, Warhol and Richard Hamilton. Rather than placing the readymade in the gallery as-is, Semple adds his trademark lyrical sloganeering, with his painterly gesture remaining intact throughout his usage of mass fabrication methods. The outcome is one where the cold banal blankness of the domestic home object is transformed into one with an emotional tone and a new communicative use.

Throughout his multi media works, including his fabricated sculptural pieces, Semple leaves traces of error, of gesture and of the hand of the artist. By mixing high and low tech, Semple’s works contradict the false hope that mass production and mechanization gave to previous generations of pop artists.

The Space 210 Hollywood Road Hong Kong