Translated by
Erin Floyd
Feb 13, 2017
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Loewe announces finalists for its Craft Prize

Translated by
Erin Floyd
Feb 13, 2017

Spanish firm Loewe has just published the names of the 26 participants who have been selected for the 2017 edition of the Loewe Craft Prize. The finalists were selected by a committee of experts from about 4,000 applications of artisans representing a wide range of disciplines from more than 75 countries on five continents. The diversity of the works presented covered a variety of techniques, means and modes of expression.

Loewe creative director Jonathan Anderson at Loewe's Miami Deisgn District store. - Loewe

The finalists, in alphabetical order and along with their nationality, are as follows: Adi Toch, United Kingdom; Anne Low, Canada; Handicrafts Panikua, Mexico; Bae Sejin, Republic of Korea; Brendan Lee Satish Tang, Canada; Celia Pym, United Kingdom; Chiachio & Giannone, Argentina; David Huycke, Belgium; Ernst Gamperl, Germany; Fátima Tocornal, Spain; Guillermo Álvarez-Charvel, Mexico; Heidi Friesen, Canada; Helena Schepens, Belgium; Igawa Takeshi, Japan; Kim Buck, Denmark; Kristina Rothe, Germany; Lino Tagliapietra, Italy; Patrícia Domingues, Portugal; Robert Baines, Australia; Sangwoo Kim, Republic of Korea; Sara Flynn, United Kingdom; Shuji Nakagawa, Japan; Sona, Bangladesh; Sylvie Vandenhoucke, Belgium; Yoshiaki Kojiro, Japan; And Zhilong Zheng, China.

According to Loewe, the committee of experts met in Madrid on 31 January 2017 to analyse all the works presented during the two days. In its deliberations, the committee set out to identify the most striking works in terms of technical achievements, innovation and artistic vision.
'The works selected reflect the author's complete commitment: a mixture of ideas, skills and processes; a tactile embodiment of mastery and vision,’ the committee said of the selection process. ‘The selected finalists (aged between 20 and 90) blur the boundaries between art and craftsmanship.’

From the list of shortlisted finalists, a jury composed of leading figures from the design world will select the winner of this year’s Loewe Craft Prize in April 2017. The winner of the Loewe Craft Prize 2017 will be announced on April 10, 2017 in Madrid. All of the works will be exhibited at the Colegio de Arquitectos de Madrid (COAM) (10 April - 10 May, 2017), and later in New York (at Chamber Gallery, 31 May - 7 June) and in Tokyo (November 2017).

The jury is composed of Jonathan Anderson, Creative Director of Loewe; Gijs Bakker, artist jeweler and co-founder of Droog Design: Rolf Fehlbaum, former CEO and soul of Vitra; Naoto Fukasawa, designer and director of the Japan Folk Crafts Museum; Enrique Loewe, honorary president of the loewe Foundation; Deyan Sudjic, essayist and director of the London Design Museum; Benedetta Tagliabue, architect and jury of the Pritzker Prize; Stefano Tonchi, director of W Magazine; Patricia Urquiola, architect and industrial designer; Anatxu Zabalbeascoa (moderator), critic of architecture and design at El País. The expert committee is composed of John Allen, upholsterer and fabric designer; Claudi Casanovas, potter; Sara Die Trill, Loewe accessory designer; Ramón Puig, artist jeweler; Markku Salo, glass craftsman and Anatxu Zabalbeascoa, design and architecture critic at El País.

The annual Loewe Craft Prize was presented by the Loewe Foundation in 2016 to promote and celebrate the innovation, excellence and artistic merit of modern crafts. Under this initiative, the aim of the brand is to recognise the importance of crafts in contemporary culture and to reward artisans whose talent, vision and desire to innovate will lay the foundation for the future. The concept for ​​the award goes back to the origins of Loewe as a collective of craftsmen in 1846. Anyone over 18 years of age who engages professionally in any craft discipline may participate.

The award was conceived by the creative director Jonathan Anderson, who says that 'craftsmanship is the essence of Loewe. We consider ourselves a house in which handicraft acquires its maximum expression, in the strictest sense. It is precisely in this reality on which our modernity is based. It will always be of great importance to this house.'

The winner of the Loewe Craft Prize will receive 50,000 euros in cash. In addition, the winning work, as well as all those selected as finalists, will be included in a special exhibition (to be presented in Madrid, Tokyo and New York, among other cities), as well as in a catalogue.

With the Loewe Craft Prize, the house reiterates its commitment to creativity in all its forms and disciplines. The basis for rebuilding the house for Jonathan Anderson has been a strong emphasis on art, design and craftsmanship, reflecting on the essential relationship between fashion and contemporary life.

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