Exhibitions

The New Guard: Stories from the New World

A commitment to new blood, ideation and incubation.

Carpenters Workshop Gallery, New York
20th October – 22nd January 2021

By Adrian Madlener / 3rd November 2021
Installation view COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Installation view
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

THOUGH DESIGN GALLERIES are always on the hunt for new talent, it’s rare that they take the risk of dedicating an entire showcase to a new crop of designers at the same time. It’s more common to introduce newcomers one by one and step by step, cultivating interest and helping them to form their own voices and styles over time.

Jerome Byron with 'Steel Dining Table', 'Steel Bench' and 'Steel Console', 2021 COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery / PHOTOGRAPH: Matt Harrington

Jerome Byron with ‘Steel Dining Table’, ‘Steel Bench’ and ‘Steel Console’, 2021
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery / PHOTOGRAPH: Matt Harrington

Carpenters Workshop Gallery, the international multi-venue platform, has taken the bold leap of showcasing seven of the collectible design world’s most-promising up-and-comers in one exhibition, ‘New Guard’. This show is part of the gallery’s ongoing initiative to support young creatives and give them the opportunity to develop their ideas and find audiences.

Anubha Sood with 'Beyond Salt and Water, Living Structure I, II and II' and 'Beyond Salt and Water, Composition I, 2021 COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery / PHOTOGRAPH: Matt Harrington

Anubha Sood with ‘Beyond Salt and Water, Living Structure I, II and II’ and ‘Beyond Salt and Water, Composition I, 2021
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery / PHOTOGRAPH: Matt Harrington

Curated by the co-founders of Anava Projects – Wava Carpenter and Anna Carnick (also Design Miami/’s Curatorial Director and the fair’s Editor-in-Chief) – alongside Ashlee Harrison, Carpenters’ Director of Americas, the exhibition explores the concept of the ‘New World’. Aligned with a renewed focus on questions of identity, heritage and the notion of place, it grapples with social, political, and cultural issues that were brought to the fore over the past two years.

Maryam Turkey, 'Between Rise and Fall' series, 2021 COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Maryam Turkey, ‘Between Rise and Fall’ series, 2021
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Seven designers from in and around the US were commissioned to create new pieces that take the creative domains of art and design to task; asking the viewer and user to confront the pressing dilemmas of our time. The term ‘New World’ refers both to the historical connotation of the North and South America regions and also to the idea of highlighting a fresh perspective.

Tiarra Bell with 'Dryness', 2021 COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery / PHOTOGRAPH: Matt Harrington

Tiarra Bell with ‘Dryness’, 2021
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery / PHOTOGRAPH: Matt Harrington

A more diverse and representative group of talents than is common in such surveys, these seven exhibitors are all decidedly conceptual and critical in their experimental and craft-driven practices. Their hand-wrought sculptural works push the boundaries of material and techniques.

Isabella Maroon with 'Vessel 1', 'Vessel 2' and 'Stand', 2021 COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery / PHOTOGRAPH: Matt Harrington

Isabella Maroon with ‘Vessel 1’, ‘Vessel 2’ and ‘Stand’, 2021
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery / PHOTOGRAPH: Matt Harrington

“As a group, they use of-the-moment, experimental materials and processes, offering a unique perspective on place and identity while exploring timely personal, local and global issues,” Carpenter explains. “They share a penchant for organic, found and sustainable materials expressed in highly sculptural, narrative-driven forms.”

Isabella Maroon, 'Vessel 1', 2021 (detail) COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Isabella Maroon, ‘Vessel 1’, 2021 (detail)
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Whereas Jerome Byron’s painted steel pieces challenge the parameters of minimalism, the economy of means and monumentality, Tiarra Bell’s hand-crafted ceiling pendant, wall sconces, and mirrors – achieved in ebonised oak and gold leaf – are expressions of her faith.

Installation view with Jerome Byron's 'Steel Dining Table' and 'Steel Bench'; Tiara Bell's 'Dryness' COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Installation view with Jerome Byron’s ‘Steel Dining Table’ and ‘Steel Bench’; Tiara Bell’s ‘Dryness’
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Susannah Weaver conceived concrete-wool objects in modernist silhouettes that exude a sense of romanticism. Channeling her experience growing up in Baghdad and her adult life in New York, Maryam Turkey’s paper pulp lighting and mirrors are suggestive of both cities’ skylines, an imaginary hybridisation distilled in bulking, roughly-hewn forms.

Martinique-based Ibiyanε,, the studio of Elodie Dérond, and Tania Doumbe Fines all honour their Afro-Caribbean and Cameroonian backgrounds in hand-crafted wooden objects: odes to personal and shared memories.

Ibiyanε, 'Elombe' series, 2021 COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Ibiyanε, ‘Elombe’ series, 2021
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

“For so long, the design canon has been framed almost exclusively through a Euro-centric lens,” Carnick elucidates. “The emerging talents presented here offer a fresh perspective on design coming out of this place in this pivotal moment – their narrative-driven works reflect an important moment not just in design, but for the world at large.

Tiarra Bell, 'Bondage', 2021 COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Tiarra Bell, ‘Bondage’, 2021
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

“We’re so thrilled by each and every one of these exciting young talents. Each has a strong point of view and a wonderfully unique voice. And together, they offer a cohesive story about design in the ‘New World’ today.”

Installation view COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

Installation view
COURTESY: Carpenters Workshop Gallery

The New Guard: Stories from the New World at Carpenters Workshop Gallery, New York.

 

 

 

Article By

Adrian Madlener
Adrian Madlener is a Brussels-born, New York-based writer covering a wide range of design-related topics.