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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Handmade in Britain 2009

Written by Rachael Oku

Yesterday a group of activists joined representatives from Canada’s First Nation communities to protest against RBS’ continued funding into Tar Sands.

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Tar sands is a particularly oily soil which is extracted by using huge open pit mining, advice prostate leaving huge 75 meter scars in the wake or by ‘In Situ mining’ which requires huge amounts of natural gas to operate.

Tar Sands extraction is also the dirtiest forms of oil, pharmacy producing 3 to 5 times as much Co2 per barrel as conventional oil, which shows a desperate attempt by corporations and governments to profit from oil no matter the cost to the environment.

These ‘oil sands’ are found predominately in Canada, which means the US can look to have less reliance on oil from conflict regions such as the middle East. However it doesn’t stop them trampling over Indigenous communities in Canada, polluting the soil, water, turning forests and ecosystems into desolate wastelands and pushing groups of people that have lived sustainably for hundreds of years into extinction.

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Eriel Tchekwie Deranger, of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation of Northern Alberta, noted: “The tar sands is the world’s largest and most destructive industrial development. “It is destroying an area of ancient forest larger than England. Millions of litres a day of toxic waste are seeping into our groundwater and we are seeing terrifyingly high levels of cancer in our communities.”

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The three women also from the First Nation communities had previously attended a meeting in Parliament to deliver an open letter to the Chancellor, Alistar Darling outlining the threat to their homes and were later planning to deliver the letter to an RBS representative.

Shouting and using megaphones they got their messages across and thanked all the people for coming down and showing solidarity with the movement. The women are on a tour of the country to promote their cause so make sure you catch up with them in your area.

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Role-playing, shouting and mass dying everyone else on the protest organised by People and Planet, aimed to get their message across on the busy street, plenty of leaflets were also handed out even a fair few press turned up as well as the bankers themselves coming out for their lunch.

RBS is one of the big payers investing into Tar Sands, which they plan to expand production on over the next few decades. What is worse is that RBS is public owned since the banks bailout in 2008. We are effectively funding human rights abuses from Tar Sands extraction through our taxes and our treasury.

The protest yesterday was calling for RBS to shift investments away from projects like the tar sands as well as investment into things like the controversial new coal power plants planned by e-on.

ts4

 A few of the bankers obviously found it really funny that people would choose to lie on the street and not, instead wear a suit and tie and play with peoples money in the stock market, but hopefully with the continued presence outside the bank hopefully something might start getting into their heads.
Yesterday a group of activists joined representatives from Canada’s First Nation communities to protest against RBS’s continued funding into Tar Sands.

ts1
 
Tar sands is a particularly oily soil which is extracted by using huge open pit mining, sildenafil leaving huge 75 meter scars in the wake or by ‘In Situ mining’ which requires huge amounts of natural gas to operate.

Tar Sands extraction is also the dirtiest forms of oil, producing 3 to 5 times as much Co2 per barrel as conventional oil, which shows a desperate attempt by corporations and governments to profit from oil no matter the cost to the environment.

These ‘oil sands’ are found predominately in Canada, which means the US can look to have less reliance on oil from conflict regions such as the middle East. However it doesn’t stop them trampling over Indigenous communities in Canada, polluting the soil, water, turning forests and ecosystems into desolate wastelands and pushing groups of people that have lived sustainably for hundreds of years into extinction.

ts6

Eriel Tchekwie Deranger, of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation of Northern Alberta, noted: “The tar sands is the world’s largest and most destructive industrial development. “It is destroying an area of ancient forest larger than England. Millions of litres a day of toxic waste are seeping into our groundwater and we are seeing terrifyingly high levels of cancer in our communities.”

ts2

The three women also from the First Nation communities had previously attended a meeting in Parliament to deliver an open letter to the Chancellor, Alistar Darling outlining the threat to their homes and were later planning to deliver the letter to an RBS representative.
Shouting and using megaphones they got their messages across and thanked all the people for coming down and showing solidarity with the movement.

ts3

Role-playing, shouting and mass dying everyone else on the protest organised by People and Planet, aimed to get their message across on the busy street, plenty of leaflets were also handed out even a fair few press turned up as well as the bankers themselves coming out for their lunch.

RBS is one of the big payers investing into Tar Sands, which they plan to expand production on over the next few decades. What is worse is that RBS is public owned since the banks bailout in 2008. We are effectively funding human rights abuses from Tar Sands extraction through our taxes and our treasury.

The protest yesterday was calling for RBS to shift investments away from projects like the tar sands as well as investment into things like the controversial new coal power plants planned by e-on.

ts4

 A few of the bankers obviously found it really funny that people would choose to lie on the street and not, instead wear a suit and tie and play with peoples money in the stock market, but hopefully with the continued presence outside the bank hopefully something might start getting into their heads.
Last Thursday I attended the eagerly anticipated Handmade in Britain craft show which returned to London’s Chelsea Old Town Hall for the third consecutive year. Open to buyers and members of the public alike, this site this four day event brought together the best in innovative and contemporary eco design in the fields of fashion and textiles, jewellery, ceramics, furniture and home accessories. Founded by Designer-maker Piyush Suri in 2007, Handmade in Britain celebrates designers who work exclusively within the UK and strive to keep their carbon footprint as low as possible by sourcing their materials locally.

By providing a platform for new designer-makers and offering part sponsorships and training workshops, Handmade in Britain aims to maintain the current high standard in the production of British Crafts and create more opportunities for the public to get involved. With over 50 of the UK’s most talented designers exhibiting I met each of them in turn and was hugely impressed by both the quality of craftsmanship on display and the variety on offer to consumers. Here is Amelia’s Magazine’s pick of the five most innovative designers to watch out for.

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The first stand that caught my eye was that of Birmingham based Needles and Hooks, who use traditional techniques to produce unique and modern contemporary wall hangings, homeware items and exquisite handmade accessories. Founded by textile designer Sara Fowles the current collection is themed around natural forms such as flowers, birds and insects.

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Taken with a low resolution mobile phone camera the photographs are manipulated on a computer and then split into component pieces reminiscent of a jigsaw. Each jigsaw piece is then transferred onto fabric and configured into a unique design. All Needles and Hooks’ products are created using a variety of eco and vintage materials such as recycled denim, wool and vintage ribbon and lace. Among the many items on display favourites were the hunting check and suede fox clutch and the beautifully embroidered floral cushions.

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Primarily a contemporary jewellery designer, another great exhibitor was Rachel McKnight who was showcasing her latest range of tableware products. Fascinated by the manufacturing possibilities and multitude of colours available, Rachel was drawn to working with plastics and rubber in order to create quirky and highly innovative items for the home.

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PB121862Exploring the concept of simple and easy to replicate shapes Rachel’s work often incorporates laser cutting, which is reflected best in her doily inspired placemats. Other items with a high impact were her laser cut Perspex coasters which featured witty captions such as Tea and Coffee, and her futuristic Perspex tea light holders which reminded me of the spaceships in Battlestar Galactica.

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Another stand which caught my eye was that of Cabinet Studios, founded by textile design graduates Gemma Critchley and Zara Braganca in 2008. In the past year they have developed a hugely successful range of crocheted, knitted and jewelled accessories created using time honoured techniques. By combining semi-precious stones, pearls and antique objects with luxury yarns and precious metals Cabinet Studios have produced an eclectic mix of contemporary luxury accessories.

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With their style inspiration best described as a fusion of quintessential English, Bohemian and Parisian chic each piece created unites the three inspirations creating something entirely unique and innovative. With each piece designed to be mix and match there are a wealth of accessories to choose between ranging from jewellery to knitted items such as scarves and hats to handbags and bespoke clothing.

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Another designer whose work really stood out was that of surface pattern designer Ashley Thomas, who launched her range of conversational designs in July 2008. Ashley’s collection of beautiful interior accessories combines humorous and whimsical illustration with suggestive stories, pattern and photography, in a graphical yet quirky style.

Ashley Thomas-Cushions-Purses-Notebooks

100% handmade and printed within the UK Ashley’s cushions are made from British linen and have two designs, front and back, making them interchangeable depending on your mood. In addition to her cushions Ashley also makes a range of notebooks, purses, wallpaper and art-prints. Asked about her design inspiration Ashley said: “I am inspired by curious themes and phrases, unusual animals and everyday objects. I love to play with composition, composing an evoking scene that makes people look twice.”

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Last but by no means least the final designer I saw spotted was Sarah Hughes quietly knitting away at her stand. Based in Brighton Sarah is a contemporary knitwear designer who makes products with a mixture of machine and hand-knitted fabrics. Currently working on a range of chunky knitted fashion accessories including handbags, hair bands and brooches Sarah is experimenting with a range of reclaimed and recycled materials, the most prominent of which is the plastic film within old video tapes.

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PB121901By producing eco-friendly products reusing a wide variety of materials, Sarah’s products aim to provide a small solution to what can be done with unwanted materials in a stylish yet practical way. Located near the end of the exhibition Sarah’s stand was a breath of fresh air and profoundly punctuated the innovative range of skills displayed throughout staying true to the traditions of British crafts whilst thinking of ingenious and highly innovative processes to move this highly specialised and much loved art form forward.

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