Second Sitters at the Geffrye Museum

Second Sitters Upholstery: Evolution to Revolution at the Geffrye Museum of the Home

With last week’s London Craft Week throwing so many events on our doorstep, it would have been rude to not go along for a look, so on Friday I went along to visit the Second Sitters upholstery exhibition at the Geffrye Museum in Hoxton to trace the history of the craft from past to present. The show takes you on a journey through the history of UK upholstery through a physical timeline and map, much of the storytelling centres around makers stories in East Londonparticularly in the Shoreditch area, making the show even more relevant honorary locals like us. On display is some great work from UK-based craftspeople who are redefining the traditional preconceived role of the upholsterer and challenging tradition and convention through some radical and thought-provoking works. The exhibition enables you to understand techniques, materials and major historical events affecting the craft such as The Great Fire of London. The multi-disciplinary range of works shown includes furniture, to photography, to film, tackling activism, social commentary, materiality and commentary on society’s throwaway culture. SCP hosted a very popular upholstery factory over the weekend showcasing the work of Coakley & Cox. I enjoyed seeing our old friend, the iconic Matthew Hilton Balzac armchair, which is in the permanent collection of the  Museum, it is an enduring example of modern British upholstery and design.

Geffrye Museum 136 Kingsland Road,  London,  E2 8EA