Craft Scotland will represent Scotland later this year when they take six of the nations’ most qualified craftspeople to the international exposition, SOFA Chicago.
SOFA, which represents Sculptural Objects and Functional Art, is a key event for the international collectors market, and regularly receives upwards of 35,000 visitors across three days.
Scotland is recognised as one of the most creative and skilled crafts nations in the world, and this is reflected in the collective talent of the group of craft-makers being represented by Craft Scotland. Work by Leith based ceramicists Craig Mitchell and Rebecca Wilson and Edinburgh based glass artist Jessamy Kelly will be joined by jeweller Craig Stuart from Dunkeld, Aberfeldy based furniture maker Angus Ross, and artist basket maker Lizzie Farey, who works from her studio in Galloway.
The work being exhibited at Chicago’s Navy Pier from 02 to 04 November 2012 will mostly be pieces created specifically for this show. These will include a chandelier created from bone china, original furniture made from ancient Perthshire oak trees, and pieces of fine jewellery using a contemporary adaptation of the ancient Japanese metalworking technique, mokume gane.
Chicago is the first of two events Craft Scotland has planned with the organisation responsible for SOFA, The Art Fair Company. Craft Scotland will also take a second collection of seven makers to SOFA New York in April 2013 and are planning other opportunities for Scottish makers to connect with the American market.
Emma Walker, CEO of Craft Scotland said: "The craft sector in Scotland currently contributes £77 million annually to the economy and there is potential to significantly increase this figure by ensuring that Scotland is represented at key international events such as SOFA Chicago and SOFA New York.
"We are delighted to be working with SOFA – whose team are keen advocates for Scottish craft – and we are very happy in the knowledge that Scotland will be represented at these shows. Craft Scotland is a proud ambassador for Scotland when we’re working abroad. The collection of work we are showing in Chicago enjoys many connections with the local environments makers are working in and so we’ll be ensuring that we do all we can to highlight that 2013 is the Year of Natural Scotland while we are there."
Caroline Parkinson, Director of Creative Development, Creative Scotland said: "Creative Scotland invests in talent to develop both skills and businesses and this prestigious presentation at one of the world’s leading crafts showcases is an excellent platform to promote the quality of work produced in Scotland."
SOFA Chicago follows Craft Scotland’s successful launch into the US craft market at the Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show in November 2011. Over four days Craft Scotland sold $200,000 of craft products made by 25 Scottish based makers www.craftscotland.org/PMA/
Craft Scotland are also participating at SOFA New York, April 2013. The New York collection will be announced later this Summer.
The Craft Sector in Scotland employs about 2,300 people and contributes £77m in Gross Value Added (GVA) to the economy. (Source: Economic Contribution Study. DC Research, June 2012).
Craft Scotland is a Scottish charity working to unite, inspire and champion Scottish craft.
Craft Scotland creates opportunities for makers to exhibit, sell and promote their work, and for the public to see, purchase and learn about craft. Craft Scotland works to unite the Scottish craft community and connect them with local and international audiences through campaigns, exhibitions, events and their website.
Find out more about Craft Scotland: www.craftscotland.org
Established in 1994, SOFA Chicago has run annually since and attracts an estimated audience of 35,000 curators, architects, interior designers, art advisors and new enthusiasts. Approximately 95-100 exhibiting galleries take part in the show, including ten international galleries one of which will be Craft Scotland.
The show takes place at the Navy Pier in Chicago and runs from 02 to 04 November 2012. For more information visit www.sofaexpo.com
For more information, interviews with makers and Craft Scotland, feature ideas and high-res photography please contact Emma Walker, Chief Executive: firstname.lastname@example.org