LONDON.- Six of the UK’s hottest young creatives have been chosen by Vauxhall to receive a commission of up to £20,000 each As part of its ongoing commitment to style and design, car company Vauxhall in conjunction with a Style Council made up of arts industry experts, has identified six of the brightest creative stars and given them a commission of up to £20,000 each, accompanied by a high profile PR campaign, to help them take their careers to the next level.
The Vauxhall Collective members for 2008 are; the innovative product designer Simon Hasan for craft & design, the much-admired shoe designer Jonathan Kelsey for fashion, artist and independent film maker Ben Rivers for film, hotly anticipated artist Matthew Darbyshire for fine art, experimental photographer and artist Gayle Chong Kwan for photography and Gideon Reeling, purveyor of bespoke interactive experiences, enlisted for the theatre category.
From every corner of the country, the Vauxhall Collective represents the best of UK creative talent. The Vauxhall Collective members were chosen because they are at a stage in their career where the commission will help them develop their work, raise their profile and help them break into the mainstream.
The six commissions will tie into the theme of The Great British Road Trip, a re-telling of the classic road trip story, with a very British twist. With the commissions totalling in the region of £120,000 this significant arts support programme in the UK, reflects Vauxhall’s ongoing commitment to supporting style and design.
Matthew Darbyshire will be using the commission to produce his most ambitious art work to date; a full-scale modern funhouse. Incorporating the design language of regeneration architecture in Britain, he will travel around the country visiting the last six funhouses in the UK, as well as drawing inspiration from 50 public buildings used to regenerate areas.
The craft and design category sees Simon Hasan taking a road trip across the UK to rediscover ancient and lost craft techniques unique to the British Isles. His discoveries will lead to him applying these techniques to modern objects with a view to producing a limited run of household objects, available for sale through the Vauxhall Collective website.
Jonathan Kelsey is producing a very limited run of luxury driving sets including key fob, driving gloves and steering wheel cover in his trade mark chestnut leather and heavy black stitching. These will be available through the Vauxhall Collective website.
Gayle Chong Kwan explores her Scottish heritage with “Senscape Scotland”, a panoramic sensory journey around Scotland, creating a series of photographs that connect together as a kind of myriorama and document of a particular landscape and its sensory and food heritage.
Film maker Ben Rivers will be making I know where I’m going! a short film in honour of the directors Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, an inspiration to Ben and a huge influence on his work. Travelling on his very own pilgrimage, he will journey through the UK to the Isle of Mull where the original I know where I’m going! film was shot and document the places and people he meets along the way.
The wonderfully eccentric Gideon Reeling invites audiences to take a road trip of their own, visiting special places Mr Reeling has identified, and upload the evidence online. Three theatrical installations will take place across the UK and the most prolific road trippers will be rewarded with a very special invitation to the mother of all Gideon Reeling performances.
A host of leading industry opinion formers from arts institutions including the Photographers’ Gallery, BFI, Film London, Crafts Council, Donmar Warehouse, Hayward Gallery, ICA, London College of Fashion and Central St Martins formed a “Style Council” to make the decision on the commissions.