Workshop Sessions

1. Workshop 1: Crafting in Industry

Plymouth College of Art in association with the School of Arts and Humanities, Royal College of Art. Convened by Dr Peter Oakley, Senior Tutor (Research) RCA and Rod Bamford, Head of Programme for Ceramics and Glass, RCA.

This workshop explored the current condition of craft in industry. Noting how the modern idea of craft has relied heavily on an opposition to industrial mass production, but how mass-production and consumption are now being usurped by societal and technological change, so that craft skills are once again being publicly celebrated, this workshop sought to move beyond ‘craft-wash’ marketing to reveal the current circumstances of intelligent crafting as, and in, late Modern industry. As part of this topic, the session considered the growing impact of formal academic research projects, knowledge exchange activities, economic and social development interventions, and current political agendas on craft practices as they relate to manufacturing.


Bennett, Julia

Innovation through Craft – from policy to research to impact

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Grayson, John

South Staffordshire Enamel – HOW... did they make that? The value of contemporary craftsmanship in revealing (absent) 18th Century metalworking skills in literary sources

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Neal, Gareth

The Certainty of Uncertainty, Risk & Uncertainty = Originality

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Oakley, Peter

Creating a Brighter Future? Responses to the commercialisation of a new ceramic print technology

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Padovani, Clio and Whittaker, Paul

Faliero Sarti: Reclaiming social heritage and artisan know-how for a ‘glocal’ market

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Vettese, Samantha

Reconsidering the forgotten ‘shoddy’ industry and concepts of authenticity through 3D printed, repurposed selvedge waste

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2. Workshop 2: The Well-Maker-Space

Plymouth College of Art in association with the Community21, University of Brighton and University of Wolverhampton. Co-convened by Nick Gant, co-founder of Community21.org, and Fiona Hackney, AHRC-funded CARE: Co-producing Community-based Assets, Research & Enterprise, University of Wolverhampton.

This workshop sought to bring together international perspectives on the role of the maker community, maker-spaces and making-methods in relation to promoting well-being and supporting mental health in diverse communities. Exploring how craft and maker movements might actively and more explicitly engage with health issues, the workshop sought to foster the development of makers as researchers. As such, it investigated the processes and methods that might be developed or enhanced to amplify the value of ‘making’ to health and well-being, to share new knowledge and insights, and build new understandings of ‘making-well’ and ‘well-making’ as activities that are devised, owned, championed and offered by contemporary makers.


Andrews, Tabatha

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Gant, Nick | Hackney, Fiona | Hill, Katie

The Well-Maker-Space

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Head, Ross

Bespoke product design and manufacture for disabled children: A case study of products and their perceived effectiveness on user wellbeing

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Hernandez, Lucie

Resonant Threads: Materialising Stories from the Community

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Johnston, Rachel

‘What I need my hands to talk about’: reflections on the Graylingwell Heritage Project

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McLaughlin, Beth

The Pussyhat Project: the role of needlework in supporting wellness during political uncertainty

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Öhlund, Emily

Dyspraxia in the workshop: an exploratory qualitative study (work in progress)

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Rana, Mah with Hackney, Fiona

Diary of a Well-maker: a note on crafts as research practice

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Blom, Jeroen with French, Tara

The Aesthetics of Prosthetic Greaves: Co-Design for Expressing Personal Identity

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Workshop Overview: Gant, Nick; Hackney, Fiona; Jane-Hill, Katie

3. Workshop 3: Making Leaders – Curating Maker Cultures

Plymouth College of Art in association with CraftNet, an independent network that promotes leadership and strategic development for contemporary craft. Convened by Paul Harper, CraftNet representative for the South West, and freelance researcher and writer on art and craft, and Alice Kettle, Professor of Textile Arts, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK.

This workshop addressed the underdeveloped potential of makers as leaders, and the value of creative maker practices in developing qualities that contribute to good leadership – not just within the contemporary craft world, but in wider work and social contexts. Exploring the actualities of modern craft production, and how these often dictate a largely future-facing modus operandi in which makers are called upon to intelligently problem solve and innovate around technology, form, function, aesthetic meaning and (not least) social relevance, the workshop sought to understand how these factors can encourage more organic leadership associations between individuals, be it in networks of practitioners, suppliers, clients, curators and audiences, or other employment.


Astfalck, Jivan | Bradshaw-Heap, Laura | Darbourne, Rachel

Beyond Junk: The complex art of value-hacking

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Harper, Paul with Kettle, Alice

Making leaders/curating maker cultures

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Harvey, Bridget with Salani, Giorgio

The Craft Readers

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Melsop, Susan

Educating the Next Generation of Designers toward Social Impact, Raising the Bar of Design Build Pedagogy

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Shaikh-Farooqui, Amneh

Happy returns: embellishing a new future for Pakistani women artisans

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van den Boom, Judith with Cocchiarella, Fabrizio

Makers to Change-Makers: A pedagogic investigation into making as a transformative tool

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Workshop Overview: Harper, Paul; Kettle, Alice