TOVI SORGA - printed leather June 30 2017
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.
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.
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 Wallet (available at The Workhouse Gallery)
Marmaduke Butterfly keyring at The Workhouse Gallery
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.
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.
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 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.
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’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.
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 wallet at The Workhouse Gallery
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).
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!
ARMEL DESRUES - glass artist and craftsman May 17 2017
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.
Get Creative March 29 2017
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.
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
Early Closing: 2pm Saturday, 4th February 2017 February 01 2017In 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 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.
"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.
"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."
"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' 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
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
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
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.
h.Art September 07 2013
Don’t miss the beautiful sights (and sounds!) of our h.Art exhibition…
We opened this morning, Saturday 7th of September and will continue through Sunday 15th September.
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