Floored by Fabric

I’m afraid you’re just going to have to deal with a barrage of images in this post because the subject in question has yet to complete his website and I can find scant information.  Do you mind if I bombarde your eyes with these beautifully shot images of stupendously spectacular fabric sculpture pieces by Rowan Mersh?  Do you mind terribly?  I can’t quite call this Royal College of Art grad a jeweller as his work is more sculptural/art orientated (he was the first to win the Mercury Art Prize and his work has alreacy been acquired by the V&A as part of their permanent collection).  It just so happens that he works with fabric in such a way that I can hardly NOT post about it. 

Mersh has however transplanted his larger scale sculptural pieces to a wearable level of jewellery and his latest collection of jewellery concentrates on using stretch jersey.  Victorian detailing is reinterpretated in black and cream highly fussy neck pieces and brooches.  It’s as if he took jersey strands and knitted them in a manic obsessive fashion.  His current collection is available at b Store.   

Although his jewellery is wonderful, once you have seen the larger scale images (which I dug out from his incomplete site…), I can’t help but be floored by them.  It’s the process that I imagine Mersh goes through to get these results that blows my mind. The accuracy achieved with these structures and on this sort of full-body scale, I can only think a lot of pain-staking work went into it.  I admire them from a static art point of view but I can also well picture them with a few minor adjustments worn as garments in their own right.  From Mersh’s jewellery line, I see the pieces (and his name fame) growing in the future to cross over into full-on fashion if he so chooses. 

From his Bodyworks collection

From his Fabric Sculpture 1 collection

From his Fabric Sculpture 2 collection    

27 Replies to “Floored by Fabric”

  1. wow. those are truly jaw droppingly crazy creations. the craftsmenship is insane! i love all the pictures but i think my favortie is the second image in the first bodyworks set you put up. everything is so gorgeous to look at though. i’m floored.

  2. Amazing find, as usual – his pieces immediatley reminded me of a larger-scale Naik Fur design. I just ordered a layered ruff/collar/necklace from her, and her prices – an pieces – might fit into every day life more easily. http://naik-fur.blogspot.com/ or at SmashingDarling.com. Wonderful aesthtic sense!

  3. also, glamaruth, yes they are in a similar genre as some of naik fur’s items. planning on visiting her shop in sac soon. good stuff.

  4. Thanks a lot for this post Susie, it’s one of (among many other) reasons I love your blog … I guess you’re already tired of these kind of comments, but as I usually observe without commenting – I felt I had to come out. Thanks for your great great blog!!!

  5. Wow, I love ornate things to wrap around my neck. People usually for get about that area. it needs just as much attention
    -marjory aka afib
    recording artist/designer

  6. He studied at Loughborough University doing Multi-Media textiles (the course I’m currently in my second year), and he’s a bit of an idol in our studio. Our tutors taught him, and he has name checked them in an interview he did with Craft magazine a couple of years ago. Apparently his Bodyworks collection was pleated jersey fabric. This kind of spectacular textiles work is the kind of things we do in Multi-media textiles. Here’s the website of the work of the graduates from last year http://seamless07.co.uk and you can see the kind of mental stuff we do with textiles 🙂

  7. yes, yes! i love his stuff too. i especially love the fringed collar which i saw on fashion156. my first thought when i saw this was the abominable snowman yet strangely i am so drawn to it that i’ve saved the image as my desktop wallpaper!

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