News

h.ART AT THE WORKHOUSE GALLERY September 06 2017

For h.Art we will be exhibiting a collection of Sara Bamford's figurative sculptures in welded steel. The gallery and cafe will be open each day from 10am to 4pm during h.Art which runs from 9th - 17th September (Sundays 11am - 4pm).

Sara Bamford Sculpture Presteigne

More about Sara's work here: www.sara-bamford.co.uk/


TOVI SORGA - printed leather June 30 2017

Makers at the Workhouse Gallery


At the Workhouse Gallery we work with makers from across the UK and we especially enjoy working with inspiring designers and craftspeople such as Tovi Sorga.

Tovi Sorga

Founded by artist and leather jeweller Tovi Sorga, Bristol based accessories brand Tovi Sorga produces some of the finest leather finishes available today. At the heart of the work are rich, delicate prints.The unique printing technique, honed by Tovi over the past decade, helps create the unparalleled depth and richness for which his work has become reknowned.

Tovi Sorga

Avoiding the flat, often mechanical effect of much digital printing on leather, bold colour is fixed in such a way as to allow high definition and range. Celebrating Tovi and his partner Agnes Davis’ love for nature, purses, wallets and journals are covered with flowers from an English summer and a Dutch spring, the impressions of lace and decoupage roses. Vibrant charms cut into the shape of butterflies and fish are printed with wonderful accuracy, mimicking the natural creatures themselves.

Dutch Spring Tovi Sorga

 

Dutch Spring Wallet (available at The Workhouse Gallery)

Butterfly keyring Tovi Sorga

Marmaduke Butterfly keyring at The Workhouse Gallery

 Tovi Sorga Octopi journal

Octopi journal

THE TEAM
Working from their studio in the vibrant hub of Bristol’s Stokes Croft, Tovi designs and works with his partner, Agnes Davis. Agnes is a writer by trade, and a poet at heart, but fell in love with Tovi and his work when they met several years ago.

Tovi Sorga Agnes Davis
Their creative partnership has led to new developments for the business, with Agnes taking on the web-design, photography, PR and marketing which enables Tovi to concentrate on meeting the ever-growing demand for their collections.

THE CRAFT
Texture and a craftsman’s adoration for material are key to Tovi’s work. The finest leather hides are selected and treated by Tovi himself to achieve his trademark ‘buttery’ texture.

Tovi Sorga leather suede

Tovi prints the leather using a digital process, and crafts his products on a hand turned vintage Singer sewing machine – one of the most essential tools in the trade to achieve absolute accuracy and control.

Tovi Sorga sewing machine

Traditional leather craft tools and techniques are then applied to create a hardwearing and luxurious finish. It’s a particularly difficult process to achieve success with, as the durability of the surface, tactility of the leather and definition of the design all need expert handling to achieve this superb finish.

Tovi Sorga leather

Tovi Sorga
Tovi’s work has become well known around the world. He has received commissions from the Royal Academy and Rijksmuseum, and also undertaken collaborations with other creators, including corset designer, Lisa Keating, tebori tattoo artist, David J Watt, and wallpaper designer, Juliet Chadwick.

ETHICS
Essential to Tovi and Agnes’ creative ethos is the sustainability of their work. Tovi only uses leathers that are recycled as a waste product of the food industry, from trusted British suppliers, who meet strict European standards of animal and worker welfare. Leather is carefully sourced to create as low a carbon footprint as possible. Packaging is British-made from recycled and biodegradable materials wherever possible.

English Summer Tovi Sorga

English Summer wallet at The Workhouse Gallery

Trout keyring Tovi Sorga

More about Tovi Sorga here www.tovisorga.com


CARD ROOM CARPET AT GOODWOOD HOUSE June 16 2017

The new circular carpet for the Card Room at Goodwood House was woven in Bulgaria under the direction of David Bamford and is an exact copy of the original Regency Axminster. This is part of David's ongoing reweaving of carpets for Goodwood House. (Photos below by James Peill, with thanks).

David Bamford carpet rug Goodwood House bespoke weaving

 

HOW WE REPRODUCE A CARPET

The process begins with a visual appraisal of the original carpet, taking note of the design, where it repeats, the major motifs and all of the colours used. Then the carpet's overall size is measured along with the size of the different motifs and distance between them to prevent distortion of the design in the drawings of the rug.

At this time we also do a knot count to measure knots per square metre. A few knots of each colour are removed from the original rug to match the dyes for the new carpet. Finally, the carpet is photographed in a grid pattern to double check that we have not missed any variations in the design.

All of this information is then used to as a guide to create a grid showing the correct knots per square metre with colour of each knot represented by a coloured square on the gridded paper. The point paper along with samples of all the colours are then sent to our weavers in Bulgaria and a 1 x 2 metre sample is woven showing all major motifs and borders for the client’s approval.

Once the client agrees the sample, the rest of the drawing for the full carpet are completed and sent to Bulgaria for the full size carpet to be woven by our team of amazing weavers!

 David Bamford rug carpet Goodwood

Read more about our bespoke weaving here and David's website here www.davidbamfordhandmadecarpets.co.uk


ARMEL DESRUES - glass artist and craftsman May 17 2017

Makers at the Workhouse Gallery

At the Workhouse Gallery we work with makers from across the UK. Armel Desrues is a French glass artist currently working at the Baldwin Guggisberg studio based just outside of Presteigne. We stock his hand blown tableware - glasses, carafes and bowls in beautiful jewel colours.

Armel Desrues Workhouse Gallery Presteigne
Workhouse Gallery Presteigne

Armel Desrues was introduced to the world of craft from an early age: his father a cabinet maker, his mother an antiquarian. Armel has always been inspired by the handmade and hand crafted. At the age of fourteen he made the decision to finish traditional education and concentrate on learning how to blow glass. At the Ecole Nationale du Verre in the Auverne, Armel spent four years studying and exploring the extraordinary natural fluidity of molten glass. A passion for this material and a determination to become truly skilled was born. 

After he completed his diploma, Armel crossed the Atlantic to Montreal in Canada, where he continued his studies at the Ecole du Verre. Here he enjoyed the freedom to experiment and explore many different techniques in glass: lost wax, flame working, cutting on glass, casting, fusing, slumping. During these three years, Armel developed his own style which he now applies to his beautiful signature pieces. He also enjoys working on simple objects which echo his earlier training in France: everyday vessels known in France as ‘the Art of the Table’.

Armel has enjoyed some fascinating opportunities. He worked in the studio of the Corning Museum of Glass in New York, an amazing institution dedicated to the art, history and science of glass. At the end of his studies he was invited to do an artist's residency in Taipei, where he spent three months.

Armel had long admired the work of Monica Guggisberg and Philip Baldwin, two international artists based in Paris where he did an internship at the age of eighteen. Armel's completion of schooling in Montreal coincided with Philip and Monica's move from Paris to their workshops near Presteigne. The timing was extremely fortuitous as they needed an assistant and Armel was keen to work with them. At the studio Armel works on projects and commissions with Philip and Monica, but also concentrates on his own work and art. These photos show Armel at work on his own collection at the Baldwin Guggisberg studio.

Armel Desrues
Armel Desrues Baldwin Guggisberg
Armel Desrues Workhouse Gallery
Armel Desrues
Armel Desrues glass blower
Armel Desrues glass artist
Armel Desrues glass blowing art
Armel Desrues glass
Armel Desrues
Armel Desrues

Here are more photographs of Armel's work :Armel Desrues
Armel Desrues
Armel Desrues

Get Creative March 29 2017

Get Creative Workhouse Presteigne Wales
As part of the BBC's Get Creative weekend we are running two free events at the Workhouse Gallery.
Friday 7 April 11:30am to 3:30pm: Chalk Painting Demonstration upstairs in the Workshop.
Come and see how you can use our Vintage Paint to ‘upcycle’ an ordinary piece of furniture into something really special. Jenny will be painting a few small pieces of furniture from start to finish.
Saturday 8 April 10am to 2pm: Sewing and Leatherwork Demonstration upstairs in the Workshop.
Come and see Rose working on our new clothing designs and handbags.

On 7-9 April BBC Cymru Wales, Arts Council of Wales, Voluntary Arts Wales and What Next? are teaming up for a weekend to celebrate the nation’s creativity – and we’re inviting you to join in. Shining a light on Wales as a place where we take part in arts and culture and get creative! More about Get Creative here https://getcreative.wales/

MALCOLM TURNER - CERAMICS March 07 2017

Makers at the Workhouse Gallery
 
At the Workhouse Gallery we work with makers from across the UK but we especially enjoy working with local craftspeople such as ceramicist Malcolm Turner.
 
Raku by Malcolm Turner at Workhouse Gallery Presteigne
Raku by Malcolm Turner at the Workhouse Gallery
Malcolm's pottery is nestled in a wooded valley in a disused quarry near Knighton. "When I found a place to build my kiln I discovered that the locals called the place Smokey Quarry, or in one case, Smokey Dragon. Too good to waste as a name for a wood-fired kiln that is more than a little 'dragonish'."
Malcolm Turner Smokey quarry
 
Smokey Dragon Pottery Malcolm Turner Wales Ceramics
Malcolm also has a a potters wheel and a small electric kiln in a shed behind his flat here in Presteigne. "I can make work here, bisque fire it and then transport it to Smokey Dragon where I glaze and fire it".
Malcolm Turner Ceramics
Malcolm Turner ceramics
Malcolm has been building kilns and making pots for over 40 years, and his work employs the dramatic Japanese technique of Raku. Pots are fired to a high temperature and removed from the kiln while they are still glowing hot, then quenched in cold water and sawdust. Sometimes explosive reaction to this thermal shock produces crackle patterns in the glaze and a rich black in the uncovered clay.
Raku ceramics pottery
Raku ceramics Malcolm Turner Presteigne Wales
Raku waiting to be fired
As well as making Raku pots, Malcolm has a wood-fired kiln in which he produces a wide range of high-fired work.
Kiln wood fired Malcolm Turner ceramics
Malcolm, "Actually 'work' may not be the best word for what I presently do. In the past I sat at a wheel and made hundreds of pots for domestic use. I still like to use the wheel and I never make just one pot at a time but now I am free to play and experiment with a range of techniques. I suppose I'm a lucky man!"
Malcolm Turner ceramics Wales
Malcolm Turner ceramics
Wood fired pottery Malcolm Turner ceramics
Malcolm is presently making some porcelain pieces for the next wood-firing. All photos are from his Instagram account, with thanks.

Early Closing: 2pm Saturday, 4th February 2017 February 01 2017

In honour of our dear friend and colleague Nicola Humphreys, we will close early this Saturday so that all members of staff can attend her memorial service.

JAMES BURNETT-STUART January 17 2017

Makers at the Workhouse Gallery

First in a series of blogs about the makers who inspire us. Here at the Workhouse Gallery we work with craft makers and showcase and sell their work. We choose thoughtful, sustainable and beautiful pieces which are expressed through dedication to method, materials and design.

James Burnett-Stuart is a local potter who produces seemingly simple rustic pottery but which is, at the same time, sophisticated and beautiful. 

James Burnett Stuart at the Workhouse Gallery Presteigne

James trained at Harrow College from 1986-8, having originally done a degree in English Literature at Cambridge University. He made ranges of tableware for shops and galleries including The Conran Shop, Designer’s Guild and Egg. His work from this period was frequently featured in magazines such as World of Interiors, Elle Decoration and Country Living. James has held solo shows of more individual pieces at The Scottish Gallery (Edinburgh), Egg (London) and Charleston Farmhouse (East Sussex). James was also Artist in Residence at Charleston. From 1999 James took a ten year break from pottery and concentrated on other things including drawing and painting. He started making pots again in his beautiful workshop at Lower Way Farm near Kington in 2009.

James Burnett Stuart

James Burnett Stuart

"I like the way pots enter our lives stealthily, benignly, and exert their quiet influence. As companions, offering beauty, comfort, practical service, sensuous experience all in a modest almost subliminal way. This is the beauty of pottery - that it lives side by side with us not calling for attention, and not provoking self-consciousness. But allowing, as it were, by slow release, discoveries of depth and detail" - James Burnett-Stuart.

James burnett stuart

"All my pots are, as always, made from red earthenware clay which is slipped with a lighter coloured clay, and glazed, possibly with a second layer. Many pots are thrown and often altered immediately – for example scalloped or fluted. Increasingly I like making pots free-hand or with simple wooden moulds. This enables one to make pots that aren’t round."

James Burnett Stuart Workhouse Gallery Wales Herefordshire

James Burnett Stuart gallery Presteigne Workhouse Bamfords

"I hope have taken some influence from local hedgerows and weather, as well as certain types of Japanese and European pottery. They are of a scale – my preferred scale – that invites being picked up, felt and used" - James Burnett-Stuart.

James Burnett stuart Workhouse Gallery Bamfords

James' work is available to buy from us at the Workhouse Gallery. Please email us if you are interested in a particular piece.

 

 


Rug and Textile Sale Now On August 23 2016

Fabulous discounts on carpets and textiles until Saturday 24th September 2016.

Crane Cookware now available at The Workhouse June 01 2016


Succulents in the sunshine May 04 2016

It is finally time to get out and enjoy our courtyard in the sunshine for a coffee or light lunch.  We are busy planting our seeds in the garden so in a months time we will start  to serve our own produce in the café for you to enjoy.  We also have a nice selection of tools and other practical and fun items to use in your garden at home.


Thank you and Merry Christmas December 24 2015

We will be having a little break for the next 10 days, but we want to
take this opportunity to say thank you to all of our loyal customers. 
We hope you all have a great holiday and see you in 2016!

Christmas at the Workhouse December 01 2015

This year’s bazaar is all about earthy colours, nature and light. We collaborated with Tom Perceval, who laser cut our window display of snowflakes, and ordered baubles in lovely, earthy shades. As always the shelves are heaving with all kinds of potential presents for your loved ones from stocking fillers to more special gifts.


New Rhodope Blanket Designs Now In Stock January 30 2015

 

If you haven't had the chance to come in lately, we have a lot of new stock coming in each week... including many new designs in our Rhodope blanket. 


Merry Christmas & Happy New Year from The Workhouse! December 24 2014

Thank you for all of your custom in 2014, we are now off to enjoy the 12 Days of Christmas and will see you in 2015!

You can still order from our website during this time, but be aware that shipping times may be longer than is usual... 


Balthazar's Bizarre Bazaar November 04 2014

Our bizarre bazaar is now up and running... you have until 4pm on Christmas Eve to come in and be inspired or start your shopping!

Annual Carpet Sale September 19 2014

Our carpet and textile sale starts Tuesday, 23rd of September and runs until Saturday, 25th October.
This is your chance to get amazing reductions on some of our most beautiful rugs and textiles.

 


h.Art 2014 September 06 2014

Sara Bamford, Philip Baldwin & Monica Guggisberg, Damien Francois and Richard Studer


Alex Ramsey - OS July 18 2014

August 21 - 25 Presteigne Festival Exhibition

Alex Ramsay's Exhibition: Os

A work in progress of prints considering bones and the various meanings they hold for us.


Lucy Boyd's Hand Painted Pottery May 30 2014

Pottery bowls, hand painted by Lucy Boyd now in stock...


Rhoda Partridge April 17 2014

New cards with artwork by Rhoda Partridge now in stock along with the wonderful film ‘Rhoda and the Tree of Life’ produced and directed by Barrie Gavin.


Spring! April 16 2014

Spring is in full-bloom even indoors… the blossoms are out on our rugs and the colours of springs are all all around in beautiful ceramics from a wide range of potters including: Celia Perceval, James Burnett-Stuart and Corinna Kenyon-Wade…


Christmas at The Workhouse November 28 2013

New stock in this week, pop in for a head start on your Christmas shopping!


New Cards by Rhoda Partridge September 20 2013

We now stock the full range of cards with artwork by Rhoda Partridge.