On Friday night I went to the launch of Neutopia, Central Saint Martins first ever jewellery dedicated runway show, with RJ’s very own Laura Mccreddie.
As I walked on to the splendid Kings Cross campus, you could almost smell the newness of the imposing building. There was much controversy over the move at the end of last year, especially after spending 100 or so years in gritty Soho, but I have to admit the £200 million plus budget they spent on creating a wonderful, state of the art hub to nurture our creative talent certainly seems to have paid off.
As we waited to enter the 400-seat theatre sponsored by LVMH, young eager ‘StMartinites’ were frantically rushing, fussing and prepping in the background.
The show was interesting and professionally curated, especially considering that the designers were only 2nd year jewellery students, full credit to them! As the lights went down we were immersed into an energetic and theatrical show, with lashings of humour, which kept the tone of the show in keeping with the overall aesthetic.
Predictably there was a huge range of creative expression, some much more literal than others. The show was themed around the awakening of the senses and transcending into a new utopia, all pretty conceptual, but it did allow students to be as creatively explorative as they wanted, without the restrictions of commerciality.
I was particularly drawn to Go Un Lee’s abstract body object, it was a conceptual piece that was intelligently constructed, it worked in harmony with, yet accentuated the body shape. Claudia Rice and Darunotai Vajrodaya created interesting African inspired tribal jewellery focusing on traditional techniques such as hammering and beading. These pieces could have easily transcended into commercial collections after some tweaking and refining. I loved Serena Wilson’s statement necklace inspired by the beauty of a snake shell once it shed its skin. Oliver Walker’s headpiece was totally wearable and Ascot worthy, again inspired by an African beaded crown, using reclaimed materials.
On a more abstract note I loved the humour of Bella Mung’s bazaar martian type character, it performed a playful dance on the catwalk, which had the audience in stitches, demonstrating her cheeky creative style. I was strangely intrigued by Momi Momii’s futuristic body instillation; I felt immediately transported right into the middle of his digital sub-conscious. Sarah Narici delivered a fun yet unique fusion of terror and elation, whilst Wonjung Han’s porcupine headpiece was fascinatingly wild!
In summary a hugely enjoyable show, on a great new campus, that will hopefully continue to produce outstanding next generation jewellery designers. Watch this space!
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