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David Rees

Programme Director: Craft
London College of Fashion
Researcher Research
David  Rees


The research project Patronage, Artisan, Media and Audience, A Model for Twenty First Century Craftsmanship, focused around an installation of abstract, figurative, structural casings created from inlayed leather-hide. Conceived to expose the level and range of skills, techniques and time required to design, assemble and decorate objects that exhibit crafts excellence, the central installation was a collection of suspended sculptural skins that extended our awareness of garment construction and embellishment, and heightened our sensitivity to the significance of craftsmanship.

Researching marquetry, illumination and the Intaglio process of acid etching from the sixteenth century, the work identifies links between historical and contemporary techniques. Inlayed materials transformed the surface of the leather hide, complementing the developed techniques for the moulding, manipulation and construction of the pieces which combine the technical skills from different craft and manufacturing fields to create new aesthetic qualities. The work produced during the AHRC Fellowship formed part of a national and international touring exhibition from October 2005 supported by a lecture, seminar and discussions.

Grants and awards

(Figures indicate amount awarded to UAL)

  • Arts and Humanities Research Council, Patronage, Artisan, Media, Audience

Research Outputs

Art/Design item

Book Section


Past research students

  • Joyce Fenton-Douglas, From 19th Century Sweated Industries to 21st Century Collaborative Practice: a critical examination and creative exploration of the ancillary trades of the London élite fashion industry. (Lead supervisor)