Loewe reveals its inaugural Craft Prize finalists

Two small bowls
Left, 'Edge of Chaos' by David Huycke, Belgium. Right, 'Waiting for Godot 130307–134090' by Bae Sejin, Republic of Korea
(Image credit: TBC)

Jonathan Anderson has a passion for craft. An avid collector himself, the fashion designer and creative director of Spanish house Loewe is raising awareness around artisan skills with a new international foundation prize, the Loewe Craft Prize.

The venture, submissions for which opened last year, recently saw over 4,000 entries whittled down to 26 finalists. Anderson was not alone in the decision making process; he appointed a star-studded jury that includes Patricia Urquiola, Naoto Fukasawa, and Design Museum director Deyan Sudjic.

Circular silver object

'Encircling Vessel, Whispering Vessels' series by Adi Toch, Israel

(Image credit: TBC)

The entries span ceramics, jewellery, textiles and furniture from across the globe – with a mix of well-known and newer names, all of whom have shown a way with craft that is innovative and technical. Nodding back to the creativity inherent in Loewe’s leather craft, Anderson tells Wallpaper* that the finalists have created 'something you look at and you can tell that no-one else is operating in that way. It feels like someone has taken a material and articulated it in a way you haven’t seen before, or it is a twist on tradition.’

These refined forms include conceptual vases by German designer Ernst Gamperl and UK ceramicist Sara Flynn, intricate metal designs from Belgium and origami-style paper dexterity from Mexico. ‘Every culture has a craft background,’ Anderson adds.

Hanging wall tapestry

'NeoFolk' by Heidi Friesen, Canada

(Image credit: TBC)

It isn't just Anderson's passion for craft that led to the inauguration of the prize – the importance of artisanal work, he says, runs deep. ‘When we live in a 24hr digital landscape,' he explains, 'we forget we have to touch things, there is an emotional part to it, we become desensitised.’

Keeping this in mind, the judges now face the hefty task of choosing a winner, to be revealed on 10 April in Madrid. All of the finalists will have a moment to shine with an exhibition in Madrid, followed by one at Chamber Gallery in New York, and then a Tokyo iteration in the winter months.

Woven gold wheel

'Tata Curiata' by Artesanías Panikua (Antonio, Gabriela and Verónica Cornelio; Bertha Esperanza Villagómez), Mexico

(Image credit: TBC)

Wooden chair & vase

Left, 'Tree Chair' by Zhilong Zheng, China. Right, 'Tree of Life 2' by Ernst Gamperl, Germany

(Image credit: TBC)

Circular wooden trays

‘Big Trays of parquetry’ by Shuji Nakagawa, Japan

(Image credit: TBC)

Patterned cloth

Left, 'An Ambitious Pagan I' by Anne Low, Canada. Right, 'White on White Quilt – Moyur' by Sona Rani Roy, Bangladesh

(Image credit: TBC)

Curved red object

'Line and Surface: VI' by Igawa Takeshi, Japan

(Image credit: TBC)

Colourful ornament

'Dinosaur' by Lino Tagliapietra, Italy

(Image credit: TBC)

Colourfully patterned tapestry

'Selva Blanca' by Chiachio & Giannone (Leonardo Chiachio, Daniel Giannone), Argentina

(Image credit: TBC)

Patterned sweater and close up of pattern

Left, 'Norwegian Sweater', original damaged sweater from Annemor Sundbø's 'Ragpile' collection, by Celia Pym, UK. Right, 'Converging Line' by Sylvie Vandenhoucke, Belgium

(Image credit: TBC)

Textured dome

'Animal Print' by Guillermo Álvarez-Charvel, Mexico

(Image credit: TBC)

Monochrome home pieces

Left, 'Burial Object "Steps"' by Kristina Rothe, Germany. Right, 'Dreamers' by Fátima Tocornal, Spain

(Image credit: TBC)

Black jug

'Esker Vessel' by Sara Flynn, United Kingdom

(Image credit: TBC)

Silver bowl

‘Ellerbeckia’ by Helena Schepens, Belgium

(Image credit: TBC)

White & black sculpture

'Winter' by Sangwoo Kim, Republic of Korea

(Image credit: TBC)

Small blue items

Left, 'Structural Blue' by Yoshiaki Kojiro, Japan. Right, ‘Many&Deliberated’ by Patrícia Domingues, Portugal

(Image credit: TBC)

Ceramic & gold ornaments

Left, 'Manga Ormolu Ver. 5.0-s' by Brendan Lee Satish Tang, Canada. Right, 'Steampunk from the Cosmos' by Robert Baines, Australia

(Image credit: TBC)

Puffy gold rings

'Puffed Up' series by Kim Buck, Denmark

(Image credit: TBC)


For more information, visit the Loewe Craft Prize website

Sujata Burman is a writer and editor based in London, specialising in design and culture. She was Digital Design Editor at Wallpaper* before moving to her current role of Head of Content at London Design Festival and London Design Biennale where she is expanding the content offering of the showcases. Over the past decade, Sujata has written for global design and culture publications, and has been a speaker, moderator and judge for institutions and brands including RIBA, D&AD, Design Museum and Design Miami/. In 2019, she co-authored her first book, An Opinionated Guide to London Architecture, published by Hoxton Mini Press, which was driven by her aim to make the fields of design and architecture accessible to wider audiences.