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Chinese craftsmen making an impression

By BO LEUNG | China Daily UK | Updated: 2017-05-03 17:56

Chinese craftsmanship will be woven into the hundreds of exhibitions and workshops at the third-annual London Craft Week, which starts on Wednesday.

More than 230 craft events are set to take place across the city during the five-day festival that ends on Sunday. Activities will showcase the best of international and British creativity.

Organizers hope visitors will "experience beautiful things, not just as static objects but in the full context in which they were created, highlighting how imagination and talent combine with the very best materials and techniques".

Caroline Cheng is curator of Experiments: Work of Young Craftsman of China at the China Design Centre, which highlights the work of young craft-makers producing such diverse items as pottery and ceramics made in Jingdezhen in Jiangxi province and contemporary performances of leather shadow puppets.

Cheng said: "This exhibition is not just about bringing Chinese work to London, I also want to encourage the young group of artists to visit places such as the Tate and V&A museums, so they can understand how others are making their craft and learn from this."

People will also get the chance to see award-winning artist He Weimin host a demonstration and workshop on traditional Chinese woodblock printing at the China Exchange in London's Chinatown.

This year, London Craft Week will host the Fashion Farm Foundation: Emerging Hong Kong Designer Makers event.

Several fashion, furniture, and industrial designers from Hong Kong will be in London to profile their work and demonstrate their craftsmanship.

They include Jay Cheng, a hatmaker and designer who has British influences in her work. Cheng said she is excited to have the chance to display her designs, which she described as poetic, romantic and theatrical. She is a pioneer of millinery in Hong Kong, having introduced her version of bespoke hat-making to the Hong Kong fashion scene.

Guy Salter, founder and chairman of London Craft Week, said: "China has been important to us from the beginning and I feel there's a real interest now in Chinese craftsmanship and skills. There is great interest in Chinese ceramics and that has led to increased interest in glass, silver and precious metals."

Salter added that he would like to see the United Kingdom and China work together during the next five years to expand Chinese content at the event and attract more visitors from China.

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