Architecture Design Fashion

British Council

Show menu Follow us on Instagram

Common Thread Residencies Open Call

 Photograph by Simon Mills

Photograph by Simon Mills

 Photograph by Simon Mills

Photograph by Simon Mills

 Photograph by Simon Mills

Photograph by Simon Mills

 Photograph by Simon Mills

Photograph by Simon Mills

 Photograph by Simon Mills

Photograph by Simon Mills

 Photograph by Simon Mills

Photograph by Simon Mills

15 May 2015
by Kendall Robbins

The British Council and Anou are launching an open call seeking 3 UK-based design and craft practitioners for the second round of the Common Thread residencies.  The residencies will take place over a period of 3 weeks, when the residents will live in the High Atlas Mountains with artisans who are part of the Moroccan e-commerce artisan-led platform Anou.  Residents and artisans will lead workshops and share their practices with each other in this exciting opportunity.  

This residency is for UK-based practitioners.  Applicants from design and craft backgrounds are preferred, though applications from other practitioners will be considered.  Residents will be given the opportunity to learn from artisans working across weaving, leather, jewellery, woodwork, ceramics and metalwork.

The full open call document and details on how to apply can be found here. 

The 2015 Residencies 

This year's residencies will run from approximately 10 - 31 August. 

The main objective of the Common Thread residencies is to bring together a wide range of creatives based in the UK and Morocco to share and exchange creative processes as well as address key questions the artisan community in Morocco have developed as a result of last year’s Common Thread programme. This experience aims to: 

  • Create a meaningful meeting of peers from the UK and Morocco to exchange skills, knowledge and ideas and to explore the relationship between craft and contemporary design in these two countries;
  • Enable participants from different backgrounds to experience first-hand each other’s industries and approaches in a way they might not otherwise have been able to; 
  • Expose participants to different approaches to the creative proces;.
  • Enable participants to share aspects of their culture and how it influences their work;
  • Address questions that have arisen within the Anou community as a result of last year’s Common Thread programme, such as what constitutes a design, how can a design be protected and what role does cultural heritage and craft play in contemporary design;
  • Provide designers with a hands-on opportunity to learn an artisan craft technique.

Further details on the residencies and how to apply can be found on the open call document here

The closing date for submissions is Monday 6 July 2015. 

Previous residency 

In September 2014, Anou and the British Council launched the first iteration of its collaboration called Common Thread. The objective of the Common Thread programme was to create an equal exchange of ideas and experiences between artisan leaders from the Anou community and UK-based designers.   Anou is a unique artisan-led e-commerce site, which brings together cooperatives and artisan communities across Morocco to create equal access to the free market.

During this programme, Moroccan artisans hosted UK designer Sabrina Kraus-Lopez, who led an introductory design workshop with several artisan leaders from the Anou community.  The workshop focused on inspiring new design through the artisans’ personal stories and cultural heritage. The ideas and designs produced were used by Sabrina and the artisans to create the Common Thread Collection of rugs, which was displayed at the London Design Festival.

At the conclusion of the programme, Anou’s artisan leaders travelled to London to visit numerous galleries, museums, designer studios and many other events as part of the London Design Festival. The experience exposed artisans to the idea that design has value, transforming how the artisans perceive design in their own work.   

More information on last year’s programme can be found here.

 

Category
British Council Project

Location
UK