Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Children take on Hampton Court Flower Show.

"Child prodigy is a curse because you've got all those terrible possibilities" 
- Itzhak Perlman

They say that it's a sad day when a father realises that his children are faster/ stronger/ smarter than they are.  I wholeheartedly disagree.  Fully cognisant as I am of my own limitations, I think it's fantastic when the next generation show signs of progressing past my own (if you ever need to understand how a mobile phone works just give it to a 10 year old).

At Marshall Murray one of our stated aims is to bring on and nurture the future of British artists and designers.  We shall be running exhibitions of fresh talent at various upcoming exhibitions, running competitions to gain entry to some of the country's most respected shows and helping artists and artisans to find studio space and a platform through our collaboration with Riverhill Gardens.  Well, here's a really fun example of what kids can do if given a voice.

Max's beautiful layout and simple design
We recently set a challenge to the design department at Trinity School (www.trinity-school.org/) to design one of our six mini-gardens at the Hampton Court Flower Show.  The students were given some examples of the sculpture that we would be showing, and the brief was to create a 2x2m space with their chosen piece and then dressed how they saw fit.

The responses were simply genius.

Some went for simple elegance, Max Finch used box hedging and water to create a tranquil space in which to recline on a contemporary wicker chaise seat by Spencer Jenkins - his slides were presented beautifully and I could readily see the design at an RHS show. 

Others went for abstraction and impact.  William Perry created perhaps my favourite individual slide, describing his garden thus:

"In my garden I have built a viewing point, installed a vending machine and put in some roses"

This line is brilliant, as is the supporting image showing the roses laying on the floor by the Coke machine, reminiscent of 1980s rock videos while making a point about consumerism in design.  Loved it.

Julian Wild's "Totem", picked by Luke
Luke Yeulett created a garden on several levels, formal and geometric.

Water and simple planting accent the grass ledges.  This would have worked really well with the industrial artwork by Julian Wild.  The school have plans to build this design in miniature, which I'm really looking forward to seeing.  Amazing facilities at that school, I was impressed with my DT's department having a bandsaw - this lot have 3D printers and access to some amazing bits of kits.

The winning entry was from Euan Baird, who detailed a simple rosemary hedge that would compliment the tones of the stone wonderfully, plus an interesting take on a viewing platform to see the marble piece (by Paul VanStone) from various heights.

Congratulations to Euan, he has won two tickets to Hampton Court, plus a signed book and entry to our sculpture garden at Riverhill House.

Special mention also goes to Josh Kenny, his planting plan and mood board were excellent examples.

If this project is anything to go by then the future of British design is in good hands.  I sincerely hope that all of the entrants enjoyed the challenge and continue to put time into designing beautiful things - watch this space!
Euan's chosen sculpture in Iranian onyx


Josh Kenny's elegant planting design.

We are also doing a similar exercise with a primary school in Frant - they have been set the challenge of replicating any of our artworks in any material they so choose.  The results will doubtless be equal part inspiring and adorable, so watch this space!


Marshall Murray