Chapman & Bailey Sow’s Ear Challenge

Jul 20, 2011
  • Article by Online Editor

Chapman and Bailey have unveiled the winning design in their Sow’s Ear design challenge at this year’s Design:Made:Trade exhibition, as part of the State of Design Festival.

The competition invited designers to create a furniture piece or lighting object from the hoop pine off-cuts from the company’s daily process of making stretcher frames for paintings. Designers were asked to ‘make a silk purse from a sow’s ear’ and transform this everyday waste into a beautiful and practical design piece.

The winning design is Hooped Light, an intricate pendant light designed by New Zealand-born, Melbourne-based designer Hayley Anne Brown. Made from over 700 pieces of timber off-cuts threaded together on metal hoops, the pendant casts a lace-like pattern of light and shadow across the room. The interior is painted in red, pink and orange, giving the piece a warm glow.

The form of Brown’s pendant is inspired by the spikey fruit that grow on the hoop pine tree – a clever nod to the hoop pine offcuts used in the pendant’s creation. The design embraces ideas of reuse, repurposing three different sizes of offcuts in the pendant. The design is also suspended using discarded canvas, another material that is abundant in Chapman & Bailey’s studio.

Chapman & Bailey have hand-crafted two versions of Brown’s winning design – one ovoid, and another dome-shaped version. Mark Chapman has also created a large, robot-like tree structure from offcuts for the display of the light at Design:Made:Trade.

Both of Brown’s lights will be on display for four days at Design:Made:Trade, along with a selection of concept sketches submitted to the competition. These include a modular table design by FMSA, a circular stool with a textured surface from Matt Ross Goodman, and a reusable Christmas tree concept by Antony Di Mase.

The Sow’s Ear Challenge is presented by Chapman & Bailey and (inside) magazine. Head over to Design:Made:Trade at the Royal Exhibition Building in Carlton (21–24 July) to see Hayley Anne Brown’s winning design on display alongside a selection of diverse entries to the competition.


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