London Craft Week 2019 - Wednesday 8th May to Sunday 12th May
For London Craft Week 2019 Sarabande will build replicas of the working studios of current and past studio residents, Castro Smith and Esna Su, to explore their journeys in making commissioned work for Sarabande’s Founding Partner, Ketel One – a family-made Dutch Vodka.
The Ketel One Commission is a collaboration between Ketel One Vodka and Sarabande Foundation, celebrating their ongoing partnership and culminating in a series of artworks to be displayed at the Foundation. Inspired by the shared values of craftmanship, heritage and the passing down of skills both through generations and across borders, the finished works will have travelled the globe and been worked on by some of the most skilled masters in their craft. Particularly inspired by a trip to the Nolet family’s distillery in Schiedam, the commissioned artworks reflect the iconic history of Ketel One and the values it shares with Sarabande - craftsmanship, care and community. Resonating with these principles, chosen commission artists Esna Su and Castro Smith showcase the incredible skills and narratives that inspire their works.
A globally recognised artist and engraver, Castro Smith created a hand engraved vessel that explores the creative journey of an object. The commissioned piece celebrates the exchange of ideas across disciplines – including engraving and hammer raising, as well as embracing unique skills, materials and traditions from different cultures. The piece also represents the commitment to craft involved in making Ketel One Vodka and the Nolet family’s continuing dedication to sourcing the best ingredients and suppliers who share their passion.
Jewellery artist Esna Su made a sculptural piece using traditional Turkish techniques learnt from her mother and grandmother. For her, she recognizes that everything starts with wheat, from the careful process of distilling vodka, to the representation of human life, fertility and bread – essential parts of life. Su’s sculpture symbolizes the family’s long history and dedication to their craft, as well as to one another, with 11 stems of wheat made in copper thread, using a Turkish crochet method translated as ‘tighten needles’ – chosen to symbolise the 11 generations of the Nolet family, exchanging knowledge and passing down of skills. In addition, 327 porcelain wheat grains made by women from the ‘Sarabande family’ were part of the installation, symbolizing the years passed since the family distillery started, in Schiedam.