This Design Creation is something very exclusive & priceless; and definitely worth watching – The Ogham Wall. The sculptural installation is commissioned in V&A’s Tapestry Gallery. This installation is a part of the year long programme by Irish Design 2015 celebrating Ireland’s creative talent. Irish Design 2015 has curated a year-long programme of small to huge national and international events with the goal of increasing awareness of the value of design to everyone. The Ireland’s design world has come together to showcase their design capabilities to the world.
Unfolded parallel to LDF 2015 was LFW 2015. This was one of the number of events in London this September as part of the Irish Design 2015 programme. On the 18th and 19th of September, ID2015 presented eleven designers in ‘Unfold: Irish Designers Collective’ at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, as part of London Fashion Week.
Irish Design 2015 in their partnership with London Design Festival (19th – 27th September 2015) presented The Ogham Wall at the V&A, an ambitious landmark project designed by Grafton Architects in collaboration with Graphic Relief and sponsored by Techrete.
Created by Grafton Architects, winners of numerous international awards including the 2008 World Building of the Year Award, working in conjunction with Graphic Relief, the installation was inspired by the Irish Ogham alphabet, dating from approximately the 4th century AD. (Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara co-founded Grafton Architects in 1978 having graduated from University College Dublin in 1974. Since then there has been a design journey for the ultra-talented team. Grafton Architects were one of six international practices chosen by the Royal Academy to exhibit in the “Sensing Spaces” Exhibition 2014).
The project brought together Grafton Architects and concrete experts Graphic Relief to create a large-scale installation in response to the theme put forward by ID2015: ‘Liminal – Irish design at the threshold’. “The V&A’s Tapestry Gallery is an oasis within a dynamic institution,” says Shelley McNamara of Grafton Architects. “In this context, and in response to the theme for ID2015, we wanted to create something with an architectural presence that doesn’t establish a boundary.” The installation is enormous in scale, consisting of 23 concrete fins stretching to a height of three meters, standing in the atmospheric surroundings of the V&A’s Tapestry Gallery. Each cluster of fins relates to a letter in the Ogham alphabet and each letter symbolises a native Irish tree. The elemental intensity of the stone-like fins, calls to mind ancient Irish and British sites with circles and standing stones such as Drombeg, Garrane or Lettergorman in County Cork, or Stonehenge in England. The impact creates a multi-layered immersive experience that invites visitors to engage with the tactile surfaces, which vary in texture, temperature and colour.
The Tapestry Gallery is the ideal setting for The Ogham Wall. In contrast to the still and quiet atmosphere created by the backdrop of the fine tapestries, the Wall forms a dramatic and imposing installation that is robust and rough, configured as a path for visitors to move between, with the placement of the fins encouraging views of the tapestries from various angles. The 15th Century Devonshire Hunting Tapestries present their pictorial surface to the public, but behind these wonderful surfaces of threaded pictures are hidden a complex weave of threads that make the pattern. This combination of ‘front’ and ‘back’ surfaces is similar to the making of the concrete fins. Visitors can touch and feel the various surfaces of the concrete, exploring the variations and textures contained in each fin. Each of the 23 fins is unique and cast using a combination of an old-school artisan approach combined with digital moulding technology developed by Graphic Relief. “Together with Grafton Architects, we’ve pushed the concrete in a completely new direction,” says Eric Barrett from Graphic Relief. “It’s a combination of old-fashioned mould-making techniques and amazing contemporary technology. I’ve never seen anything like it before.”
The result is a tactile surface that references the richly textured tapestries in the room, and is described by Grafton as “man-made geology that is beautiful to touch and to look at”.
The fins are constructed from a variety of concrete mixes containing various metals that reflect the patterns inspired by various tree bark textures. This inspiring project has been sponsored by Techrete Ireland Ltd.
This impressive sculptural installation “The Ogham Wall” is on display till tomorrow the 27th September till 05:45 pm. It’s a must visit from The Interior Directory’s journalist’s team.
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