Collect: international art fair for contemporary craft and design 2021

Image credit: House on Mars with stylist Katie Phillips and photographer Ceri Davies.

I am delighted to announce that my work has been selected by House on Mars to showcase at Collect: international art fair for contemporary craft and design which will take place online from 26 February – 2 March 2021

House on Mars presents ‘Beyond Typology’ at Collect 2021 art fair

House on Mars gallery is an offbeat, contemporary design gallery, showcasing an avant-garde collection of wearable art, objects, and wall pieces. Established in 2020 by architect, educator, and maker Vanja Bazdulj, the London-based gallery is home to a range of unconventional materials, processes, and ideas. Taken together, they are realised in an array of surprising, three-dimensional forms.

During this year’s online Collect art fair, presented in partnership with the online art platform Artsy, House on Mars will show a harmonious collection of pieces in a dedicated virtual booth. Titled ‘Beyond Typology’, the gallery’s showcase will consist of an array of materials, formats, and textures, based around the human need for comfort and self-expression. Vanja Bazdulj explains: ‘the showcase is about reimagining and reinventing our environment and our body as more humane and curious places, where we can feel safe and relaxed.’

A range of artists and makers, both established and emerging, will take part in the House on Mars Collect showcase.

Image Credit: RE:animate series image by  House on Mars with stylist Katie Phillips and photographer Ceri Davies.

The award-winning jewellery artist Zoe Robertson will present pieces from her ‘RE:animate’ collection. In one, ’Sensory Playground’, Zoe has created tactile objects, made for grown-up humans to play and interact with. An artist of international repute, Zoe experiments with an assortment of unconventional matter, typically industrial in nature. She seeks to produce objects imbued with physical and tactile qualities, using materials that evoke a sensory response. The artist Anna Ray has created ‘Weave’, a large, flamboyant, and colourful wall installation. Through her handmade works, Anna explores the visual and emotive potential of fibre-based materials, such as silk, cotton, velvet, and wool. To make Weave, Anna wove together a combination of painted, padded, and hand-block-printed fabric strands. Weave was inspired by the ‘energetic repeats’ found in traditional Polynesian barkcloth.

The artist Karin Herwegh has made a number of curious brooches and necklaces, each one showing a certain sensitivity and humanness. Fascinated by simple objects and their potential to tell stories, Karin concentrates on the ways in which an object can be interpreted. She makes every effort to ensure the ‘experience’ of making remains apparent, valuing factors such as time, slowness, and imperfections. Up-and-coming young designer Nicholas Marschner is working on a series of hand-polished zinc mirrors, characterised by the apparent form of a disquieting reflection. The House on Mars showcase will include his ‘Apparitions’ and ‘Grey Area’ mirrors. As a designer and maker, Nicholas focuses on rich narratives and complex industrial processes, creating poetic and decorative, yet functional, work.

Up-and-coming young textile designer Alicia Rowbotham has created a luxurious, large-scale silk fibre installation, made with waste silk salvaged from Gainsborough Silk Weaving Company. A recent graduate of Central Saint Martins, Alicia is driven by the reclamation of traditional, established craft methods—she then seeks to reinterpret these methods in a contemporary fashion. Lambert Kamps is an established artist and designer, based in Groningen, a city in the Netherlands. Widely exhibited, his work is known for blurring the boundaries between art, architecture, and design. For the House on Mars showcase, Lambert will show a selection of his ‘Fat Furniture’: described as ‘swollen furniture’, the ‘Fat Furniture’ collection was inspired by the rise of obesity in the West’s consumer-driven society. A new large piece will also be unveiled.

By challenging familiar material conventions, the London-based Spanish artist Attua Aparicio enjoys finding new ways of working with existing materials, including plastic, ceramics, and waste glass. Attua will present her ‘Cookie’ vases and bowls, and her never-before-seen playful ceramic lighting. A rchitect, furniture, and object designer–maker Juliano Cordano will show his ‘Untold Layer’, ‘Villanova’, and ‘Gentrification’ wall panels. This statement collection is an expression of Juliano’s architectural background, translated into art.

This is the full list of artists and makers taking part in the House on Mars Collect 2021 showcase: Attua Aparicio, Ela Bauer, Ana Margarida Carvalho, Juliano Cordano, Zachary Herrmann, Karin Herwegh, Lambert Kamps, Peter Marigold, Nicholas Marschner, Lina Peterson, Anna Ray, Zoe Robertson, and Alicia Rowbotham

Visit House on Mars | @houseonmarsgallery | #houseonmarsgallery


About Collect 2021

Collect: international art fair for contemporary craft and design will take place online from 26 February –
2 March 2021

Collect is one of the world’s leading art fairs for contemporary craft and design having been established
in 2004 by the Crafts Council. Collect brings together international gallerists, experts in their fields, to
showcase and sell work by living contemporary craft artists. Much of the work is made especially for the
fair and soon finds new homes in private and public collections around the world.

Visit Collect | @collectartfair


From Mars with Love

From Mars with Love | London Design festival | 12th – 20th September

Born out of passion for design and making, together with the love for playfulness in home goods and jewellery, the gallery aims to offer a carefully curated collection of designed and crafted objects for the modern human. ‘From Mars with Love’ is showcasing pieces from jewellery to furniture, by a very eclectic mix of designers and artists.

Our primary objective is to celebrate and promote amazing artists, designers and makers and to select objects that add a joyful component to everyday experience, sometimes provoke, surprise and mostly comfort our uncertain existence.

Gallery founder Vanja Bazdulj is an architect, educator and maker who has spent many years running her own studio and working as a curator supporting an interdisciplinary Art School in the heart of London. After almost 15 years of immersion into 3d design disciplines, Vanja’s love for makers and designers expanded into this gallery.

The Pop-Up Exhibition will be hosted in her studio space in Sunbury Workshops, which she shares with her friend and fellow designer Juliano Cordano, showcaseing 10+ artists and designers.

The year is 2020 and it is not what we expected, but we will try our hardest to make it as bearable as possible.

Press release courtesy of House on Mars


Anna Ray, artist

Ana Margarida Carvalho, jewellery designer

Attua Aparicio, designer and maker

Jochen Holz, glass artist

Juliano Cordano, designer and maker

Karin Herwegh, jewellery designer

Lambert Kamps, artist

Peter Marigold, designer and maker

Nicholas Marschner, designer and maker

Alicia Rawbotham, designer and maker

Zoe Robertson, designer and maker

Xiangyin Shi, jewellery designer

James Stickley, designer

Joanne Vosloo, designer

For more information visit London Design Festival  and House on Mars 


Design By Women

Design by Women | August 2020

Delighted to be interviewed and featured on Design By Women 

Zoe Robertson is a designer-maker and creative director based in the Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham. In 2015 she founded Dual Works with her husband Steve Snell to create bespoke design solutions ranging from art exhibitions and community commissions to commercial projects. Their clients have included National Memorial Arboretum, Sense Charity and Midlands Art Centre. Primarily working in woods, plastic and metals for projects related to interior design and manufacture, Zoe and Steve are multi-skilled makers and together have over 50 years’ combined expertise.

Zoe took a degree in jewellery making, silversmithing and applied crafts from which she went on to a successful career in education. She has taught on foundation courses in 3D Design, at the Design Museum in London and spent 14 years at the renowned School of Jewellery in Birmingham where she progressed to Course Director.

Alongside her teaching career Zoe has developed her artistic practice. She designs through making and experiments with form and materials in the studio. This has led her to create work that challenges perceptions of the way jewellery is usually displayed behind glass in gallery exhibitions, rebelling against this by creating large-scale work that allows, “the audience to touch and interact with it.” This led to a series of exhibitions between 2016 – 2019 called flockOmania which were, “an interdisciplinary laboratory of making which bought together the visual and material practices of contemporary jewellery/sculpture with dance/movement in an experiential, immersive environment.”

Passionate about promoting design and making skills, Zoe has initiated collaborative projects which inspire young people through making. In 2017 she was invited to contribute to FutureMakers, a residency at the Midlands Arts Centre based in a purpose-built design studio within the exhibition space where the design and making process was displayed to the public. She has also set up Girls with Power Tools, a workshop aimed at giving women the confidence to use tools to make and construct things for themselves. Interviewed by Mary Hemmingway who initiated Design By Women

You can read the full interview here

Parallax 14: Craft and Art Symposium

WED 12 FEB 2020 / 09.30 – 17.00 

Curated by Zoi Dimitriou and Jonathan Owen Clark

What is the relation between craft and the performing arts? What are the socio-political connotations these relations hold today and how do these challenge, redirect and nourish artistic, curatorial, pedagogical and social practices?

Craftmanship as an intimate working with materials and their transformation has recently been drawing attention in both the artistic and academic milieu. Notions of repetition, persistence, resistance, foresight and ‘following the materials’ are but some of our anchoring focal points. One line of theoretical inquiry can be traced through the work of Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, who suggest that to ‘follow the materials’ is to think from the materials – to find ‘the consciousness or thought of the matter-flow’ (Deleuze and Guattari 2004:454). Another way of approaching the subject is through Tim Ingold’s anthropological analysis of the embodied processes of enskillment that join both art and craft-making.

Practices of craftmanship have close links to the daily practices of the dancer, musician and artist. How can we discuss these processes from the viewpoint that even the smallest of ‘gestures’ (actions) can produce things, affects and change that encompass the potentiality for domain shifts and moving us through/across borders?

The symposium is inspired by an Atelier on Dance and Craft organised by the Duncan Dance Research Centre and EDN (European Dance House Network) that took place in Athens during Spring 2019.

For information visit Trinity Laban and Download the full programme (pdf).

Laban Building, Creekside, London SE8 3DZ / Free and open to the public. 

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JIMS poster ZR 2.pdf BIG

JiMs | 15 – 30thNovember

Dr* Zoe Robertson & Dr* Rachael Colley of the HSKTEEMN Research Centre prescribe JiMs

JiMS is a collaboration between artists Zoe Robertson and Rachael Colley of the newly established HSKTEEMN research centre. Together they actively explore relationships between the body and space in a playful environment, specifically designed for Odox Arts’ project space.

This site-specific installation has been created to engage audiences by offering an immersive experience which has been designed to enable participants to physically interact with and “wear” the space. Drawing ideas from the fields of science and sport to encourage playful participation, Zoe and Rachael have created an exciting space where designs have been informed by their early fun physical learning experiences, such as PE (Physical Education) in the school environment. Through processes of active involvement the duo encourage visitors to reflect on their personal experiences of inhabiting their bodies, with the aim of observing and questioning limitations imposed by both the physical body and society’s views of the body.

Participating in the experience is by appointment only, emulating a visit to the doctors, performance in a bleep test or some other physical form of examination. Participants are challenged to tackle this jewellery gym by undertaking a fun assault course, with elements that focus on different areas of the body, the aim being to find #MySpace in and amongst this environment.

On show at Odox Arts project Space, 171 Great Hampton Row, Birmingham, B19 3JG.

30-minute appointments available from 11am – 4pm, Fridays & Saturdays from 15 – 30th November 2019

To book your appointment use the following link

About the Artists

Rachael Colley_Cutlery comb at Steinbeisser, June 2019_image by Kathrin Koschitzki

Image | Cutlery Comb, Ambiguous Implements created by Rachael Colley, 2019,

photograph by Kathrin Koschitzki

Rachael Colley is an interdisciplinary artist and senior lecturer in Jewellery and Metalwork at Sheffield Institute of Arts, Sheffield Hallam University. Her current research brings together jewellery, created predominantly using food waste, and ambiguous artefacts for eating. She invites diners to wear these visceral jewellery pieces whilst consuming food with alternative dining tools

FlockOmania created by Zoe Robertson in colloboration with Amy Voris and Natalie Garrett Brown. Image by Christian Kipp

flockOmania created by Zoe Robertson in collaboration with Natalie Garrett Brown, Amy Voris2015-2018

photograph by Christian Kipp

Zoe Robertson is an award-winning jewellery artist, whose work is exhibited within an international arena. Her studio practice explores jewellery within performance whereby a cross disciplinary approach enables her to create experiential and immersive environments which invite audience interaction and participation. Alongside this she is co-founder of the Dual Works a creative design studio based in Birmingham, UK


Piloting inclusive arts consultation at Sense Arts

During April and May 2019 I’ve been working with Sense Arts and have created a sensory sculpture in collaboration with the Sense community and Swoomptheeng as part of their inclusive arts consultation.

Below is a blog post written by Stephanie Tyrrell, National Arts Manager who tells us more about Sense Arts.

What’s it all about?
In late 2018, Sense Arts were delighted to get funding from Arts Council of England to develop a strategic arts plan for the next phase of inclusive arts at TouchBase Pears.They want the strategy to reference the ethos and practice that they’re passionate about and showcase to the fullest, the talents of those they’re nurturing through this programme.Their goal is to create artists and participants with complex disabilities as leaders in the sector and to inspire other disabled and non-disabled artists to work more inclusively.

How are we involving the people we support?

“We want the people we support to be at the heart of our arts plan and be a part of an in-depth consultation about what we should do.”

Of course, part of that consultation includes thinking about how we involve with people with complex disabilities in the process, without it being tokenistic, and help them to use their experiences to design what they want from Sense’s arts programme.This gave us a wonderful opportunity to gain insight into what and how people wanted to be involved in art making and for us to pilot some new techniques so everyone can connect and share the experience equally.We were able to reflect and evaluate how people approach new materials, meet artists share with the community, take lead in their own experience, set the pace of their collaboration and define the space they need to connect.The design elements created during the consultation will inform the main visual design of our arts plan and will be turned into a interactive sculpture at TouchBase Pears. This will mean the whole community , including people with complex disabilities can experience the collaborative process and art making at Sense.

How did we do it?

We knew we wanted to worked with artists whose work is sensory, interactive , high quality and most importantly inclusive to everyone. We also wanted to work with local artists and bring in new practices to Sense and TouchBase, so we piloted bringing different artists and their practices together – including music, visual arts and sculpture. The consultation ended up being two parts:

  • The first involved the people we support experiencing and making artwork together with arts collective Swoomptheeng. and their Daance Maast.
  • The second part involved reflecting on that experience with artists Zoe Robertson, who is an award-winning artist who creates experiential and immersive experiences for audience to actively take part in.

The first stage…

Swoomptheeng brought the Dance Maast – a multiplayer, sensory music writing machine for groups to use to collaborate together and play beats! People sat in a circle around the mast and pressed push buttons to trigger sounds and vibrations. Anyone could join in at any time and create their own piece of music. People responded well to the range of sounds, visual feedback and vibrations via subpac vests.

One of our lead artists collaborating with Zoe was Paul Hicken, who is supported by Sense and is a keen visual artist. Paul loved experiencing the Dance Maasst and reflecting on his experience with Zoe. This approach gave him time to meet new people, make music and vibrations, and share what this was like.This process was about valuing everyone’s different contributions in an inclusive way – the very foundation of how we want to approach consultation

The second stage…

Once people had experienced music making together, they then worked with Zoe to capture moments and generate ideas for the inclusive arts plan. Working with Zoe, Paul and the other participants explored different materials, explored art making, and responded to actions and sounds.Paul would indicate his favourite sounds, recognise other people making music with him, play with sounds, then manipulate materials with Zoe to replicate that experience. Zoe will take Paul’s marks and amplify this in the design of the arts plan and on the final sculpture for TouchBase Pears.

What was the end result?

After the two days of consultation, Zoe commented on that she felt a deep sense of connections with participants and with Paul and that there was a strong ‘dialogue’ through making, eye contact and touch

By the end of the two days, we had over 6 metres of work, which will form the main design ideas for the arts plan and inclusive sculpture. We had lots of fantastic feedback.

We hope this piece will demonstrate on investment in promoting creativity and contributions of deafblind and disabled artists. Special thanks to Arts Council of England for supporting the project and thank you to the staff at Sense, TouchBase Pears , Zoe Robertson , Paul Hicken, the Swooptheeng, Sima Gonsai, Ruth Richardson and all of the participants and Sense support staff.

What’s next?

This consultation process, alongside the learning we have from the Sense Arts programmes, will be combined over the next month to create a new strategy for Sense Arts. This will detail what we want to achieve and how we will achieve this.From the consultation we’ve decided to call our plan ‘Space to be Different’. This came about from reflecting on people’s processes and recognising that to connect people with complex disabilities to arts, we need to further evaluate access to arts, create a bigger, bolder space for all contributions to be celebrated and define our methods and processes.

We want to create further visibility and enriching arts and cultural experiences for people with complex disabilities to become artists and creative leaders‘Space to be Different’ will be installed at TouchBase Pears from 27 May, and we’ll be launching the inclusive arts plan on 13 June.


Industrialised, Art in Manufacturing in the Gallery


INDUSTRIALISED, Art in Manufacturing in the Gallery
Sat 15 Jun – Sun 15 Sep 2019, FREE
Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery, Blackburn, Lancashire

Featuring work unexhibited in the UK to date and providing a rare, multi-disciplinary view of industry, human contributions to manufacturing and the impacts of factory making on our landscape, INDUSTRIALISED, Art in Manufacturing in the Gallery opens at Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery between Sat 15 Jun and Sun 15 Sep 2019.

Featured artists include Jasleen Kaur, Mandy Payne and Kate Haywood, while French photographer, Charles Fregerexhibits the Bleus de Travail(‘Work Overalls’) photography series for the first time in a UK gallery, a long-term study of technical college students during the 90s. Other selected artists include Karen Mathison, André Stitt and Chrisoula Kostankakou, Zoe Robertson, Sue Rossiter, Jason Taylor, Pascal Ungerer, Katie Watson’sand Maria Kapajeva.

For information about all of the exhibitions, art installations and events for the 2019 festival visit or connect with the festival on social media at:



Birmingham Open Studios

Birmingham Open Studios

Delighted to announce I will opening my studio the Dual Works for Birmingham Open Studios on Saturday 4th August 10 – 6pm. The Dual Works will be showing our Quarterhaus homewares collection along with work by Zoe Robertson, Sellotape Cinema and Emma McCusker
About Birmingham Open Studios
Come and explore Birmingham Open Studios, showing the work of nearly 100 artists, across 11 spaces with 5 one off events.

Take a behind the scenes look into the canal-side warehouses, old factories, and new developments that make up Birmingham’s artists studios, workshops and project spaces.

This open studio event connects the city’s creative spaces, showcasing the artists, designers and makers working within them. Step inside and meet artists in their place of work, explore their working processes, have the opportunity to buy one off pieces, and discover the diversity of talent and skills at work under the surface of Birmingham’s ever expanding creative scene.

For 2018 Birmingham Open Studios has been organised by Eastside Projects, Grand Union, International New School and Studio Capri with the ambition to open up the cities art spaces and artists to the wider world whilst bringing artists together.
Birmingham Open Studios Map
For more information please visit Birmingham Open Studios