The annual LOEWE Craft Prize returns with a shortlist of 29 finalists for its third edition.
The Craft Prize recognises artists who make fundamentally important contributions to the development of contemporary craft, together they present a diverse spectrum of techniques, media and modes of expression.
The objects themselves resemble in the use of traditional techniques taken into unexpected applied artistry, but surprises in the immense diversity of materials. From glass and stoneware, steel wire and copper, silver and gold to textiles, rattan and paper.
Starting with the bowl spun from a fine gold thread by Italian goldsmith Giovanni Corvaja. The process is a marriage of science and craft where precious metal turns into delicate fibres, almost as soft as the touch of fur.
The Geisha Handbag Series by US-based weaver Deloss Webber is a homage to Japanese weaving techniques. Surprisingly he inserts granite stones into each basket, making them functionally obsolete but visually compelling. For him the stones are an expression of reverence for nature, taking the individual qualities such as contours, colour and size into consideration for each piece.
Within the group of finalists are four ceramic artists, one of which is Shozo Michikawa from Japan. ‘Tanka with silver’ is stoneware that is shaped into a dynamic form varying in tones and textures and finished with a glaze of silver liquid.
The work ‘ the Moon Jar’ by Akiko Hirai from the UK is an expressive vase made of stoneware, porcelain, wood ash and white feldspathic glace. Her relationship to the kiln and the firing process is fundamental and the outcome is a contemporary form with tremendous presence.
Each finalist’s work will be exhibited at Isamu Noguchi’s indoor stone garden ‘Heaven’ at the Sogetsu Kaikan in Tokyo, from 26 June to 22 July 2019.
The selected finalists for the LOEWE FOUNDATION Craft Prize 2019 are (in alphabetical order, with nationality):
Akiko Hirai (b. Japan lives and works in United Kingdom)
Andrea Walsh (United Kingdom)
Annie Turner (United Kingdom)
Deloss Webber (United States)
Elke Sada (Germany)
Giovanni Corvaja (Italy)
Harry Morgan (United Kingdom)
Heeseung Koh (Korea)
Henar Iglesias (Spain)
JingFeng Fang & Mi Dong (China)
John Eric Byers (United States)
Jokum Lind Jensen (b. Denmark, lives and works in Sweden)
Junko Mori (b. Japan, lives and works in United Kingdom)
Kazuhito Takadoi (b. Japan, lives and works in United Kingdom)
Koichi lo (Japan)
Kye-Yeon Son (b. Korea, lives and works in Canada)
Youngsoon Lee (Korea)
Masanori Nishikawa (Japan)
Mayu Nakata (Japan)
Michal Fargo (b. Israel, lives and works in Germany)
Minhee Kim (b. Korea, lives and works in United Kingdom)
Ruudt Peters (Netherlands)
Shozo Michikawa (Japan)
Sophie Rowley (b. New Zealand, lives and works in Germany)
Tomonari Hashimoto (Japan)
Words and Photography by LOEWE Foundation