exhibition archive

Ideal Home

original and editioned design and art from private collections and the Special Collections of Chelsea College of Art and Design

Curated by Donald Smith

20.09.11 - 22.10.11

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List of works

List of works (PDF)


List of works

Entrance space

Richard Woods – Dry Stone Walls 2011 Kindly loaned by the artist

There are a number of ways you can construct a dry stonewall. My work is made using the „Double‟ Method. This means that two rows of stones are laid side by side. My dry stone objects are perfectly geometric; if they weren‟t fake they would display a great „walling‟ technique. The work is designed to be „sat on‟, „leant on‟, or „stood on‟. It‟s the real or implied physical interaction we have with an object that gives it its potency.

Mark Titchner – The Artist’s Studio 2007 courtesy of the artist

This film was made for the exhibition Vertigo: Marcel Duchamp and Mark Titchner. Bored of lazy journalism describing Titchner‟s work as “Duchampian”, CHELSEA space wanted to give him a right to reply. Mark Titchner told us “before I ever went to art school or heard of Duchamp I bought a Black Sabbath album from Luton Market, it was on the Vertigo record label – a graphic pastiche of Duchamp‟s Rotorelief - and I had a sort of non chemical high listening to this weird music and watching the label go round. I was also into Brion Gysin‟s Dreamachines, the myth of the altered state that the Dreamachine can invoke is as important as the experience itself”.

Rose Finn-Kelsey – House Rules 2001 kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

“An endless stream of LED words appear from nowhere and go nowhere. The effect is hypnotic, provocative and humorous. As the stream of prohibition scrolls past, the voice without sound shows apparent intonation, inflection, volume and pitch. The voice of dissent occasionally interjects. "The world of 'no' is contested, but unstoppable".

Ami Kanki – Guard Me 2011 courtesy of the artist

Ami Kanki is interested in how we use space, she makes models of buildings such as galleries and then films them. The films appear to be CCTV footage of real spaces though, of course, there is no human presence. It is somehow appropriate that her work refers to surveillance because CHELSEA space is on the former site of the Millbank Penitentiary, a 19th Century prison that pioneered sophisticated observation techniques.


Daily Mail Ideal Home Exhibition – catalogue 1913 courtesy of the Olympia archives

The Daily Mail Ideal Home Exhibition is the starting point for this show at CHELSEA space. The centre piece of our exhibition is a rug by Frederick Etchells made for the Omega Workshop stand at the Daily Mail Ideal Home Exhibition of 1913.The catalogue includes a description of the Omega room.

Richard Elliott – Falling Water and Eltham Palace. circa 1995 kindly loaned by the artist

Richard Elliott's drawings and watercolours of modernist buildings and interior spaces bring a painterly expressive approach to the formal qualities associated with such architecture. The first image is of „Falling Water‟ the iconic experimental building by Frank Lloyd Wright built between 1936 and 1939 as a summer retreat for the Kaufmann family at Bear Run south east of Pittsburgh, USA. The second watercolour depicts the interior of Eltham Palace in south east London, another 1930‟s building built this time in an Art Deco style for the Courtauld family on the former site of a palace of Henry VIII.

Jane Ashley – Laura Ashley Photo shoot kindly loaned by the artist

This image was created in 1981 by Jane Ashley during a promotional photo shoot for the influential designer Laura Ashley. The evocation of the early 20th century in the dress of the model and the surrounding interior and furnishings take on an almost fetishistic, sinister quality.

Rachel Whiteread – Herringbone Floor 2001 kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

“Herringbone Floor is based on a drawing of a parquet floor. This grid of interlocking rectangular lines was scanned and mapped onto a sheet of very fine plywood. Using laser technology, the areas between the lines were then cut away. The remaining web of material, here and there scorched by the laser cutting process, represents the gaps between the herringbone floor tiles - in essence a delicate pattern of negative space”.

Carol Tulloch – Cocktail Glass from the Tulloch Family Collection courtesy Carol Tulloch

I remember the first contextual studies lecture I attended was on Kitsch. When my tutor showed images of champagne cocktail glasses I was mortified as I recognised them as similar to ones that were always part of my childhood home. Then there followed an image of a plastic pineapple ice bucket and one of a carpet with an enormous floral design. At the time I felt the talk defined my Jamaican parents, who came to England in the 1950s, as Kitsch and somehow not of value. But then I had a revelation – If we were Kitsch we were also a part of design history.

Main Space

Bob & Roberta Smith – Rock Record 1996 Kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

A very literal use of language, Rock Record is made of rough cast concrete but has a very fine top surface with the grooves of a 12″ vinyl record impressed into it – a negative of the original which could be played but would ruin a stylus.

Alvar Aalto – Savoy Vase 1936 Kindly loaned by iittala

The Aalto Vase originated from some sketches of organic shapes which won a competition to find unique glass designs for the Finnish Pavilion at the 1937 Paris World Fair. The vase was produced in different forms, heights, and colours which were all shown in the Finnish Pavilion, also designed by Alvar Aalto in collaboration with his wife, Aino Aalto. The vase was also nicknamed the Savoy Vase because Aino and Alvar Aalto used them in the interiors they designed for the Savoy Hotel, Helsinki, in 1937.

Mike Iveson – The Last Futurist Show 2011. kindly loaned by the artist

This is a 2011 drawing made in London from a photograph of an installation in Belgrade Serbia in 1985 based on a photograph of an exhibition in St Petersburg Russia from December 1915 to January 1916 by the Russian artist Kazimir Malevich

David Bowie – Wallpaper 1995 kindly loaned by Paul Gorman

These sections of wallpaper were made as part of a fundraising event for the charity Warchild. The design shows a repeated self portrait of the artist Lucien Freud in a Damien Hirst-style tank on a Laura Ashley designed floral background. This eclectic use of cultural symbols epitomises Bowie‟s cut and paste techniques and reconfigurations often found in his music.

Gerrit Rietveld – Red and Blue Chair 1917 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

Rietveld was a member of the „de Stijl‟ movement along with Piet Mondrian, the Red and Blue Chair was designed in 1917 and was one of de Stijl‟s earliest experiments in 3 dimensions. Chelsea School of Art ordered this particular chair directly from Rietveld in 1963 and it was fabricated by G.A. van de Groenekan who had worked with Rietveld since 1917/18.

Roger Ackling – Voewood 2010 private collection

Ackling makes his work by projecting sunlight through a magnifying glass to burn lines of tiny dots into geometric patterns on found and discarded materials. This broken child‟s seaside spade is an archetypal tool used in some of our earliest encounters with building and making.

Anya Gallaccio – Motherlode 2005 private collection

For this project Gallaccio collaborated with winemaker Zelma Long to create a „portrait‟ of Sonoma California by creating a series of wines from Zinfandel grapes harvested from distinct vineyards in an attempt to “quantify the complexity and diversity of Sonoma County by using the very physical properties of the land as material”. The grapes were harvested in 2005 and bottled in 2007.

Peter Liversidge – Perfect Match 1996 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

A pair of size 8 carpet slippers with sports studs - ideal for armchair sports

Frederic Pradeau - Performance, Assembled IKEA furniture blind folded, without training kindly loaned by the artist

Ikea ‘flat pack’ furniture has been the starting point for many new homemakers with aspirations of a life enhanced through good design, though self-assembly has removed some of the mystic and comes with its own built-in challenges. Fred Pradeau ups the ante and confronts the difficulties and humour associated with flat pack by constructing one of its most ubiquitous forms, the IKEA ‘Billy’ bookcase, whilst wearing a blindfold.

Diane Guyot de St Michel – Be Amish 2010 kindly loaned by the artist

This work focusses on the memories of the people of Cork, Ireland, and the economic changes and challenges faced by the community there. Guyot de St Michel turned the old bar of the disused Cork airport into a DIY brewery in an attempt to make Beamish Stout which had been brewed in Cork for over 200 years until it was bought out by Heineken leaving 120 locals unemployed. “The title of the new beer is a pun on cultural ownership and a central Amish belief: Do not be conformed to this world”.

Barney Bubbles – Do It Yourself 1979 (25 out of 28 variations) kindly loaned by Paul Gorman

Designer Bubbles reputedly made 28 variations of the Do It Yourself album cover for Ian Dury and the Blockheads using Crown Wallpaper samples. Stiff Records struck a deal with Crown to include the individual wallpaper product codes on the album covers so Crown could have advertising in a new market place in return for waiving copyright, and so that fans could trace the wallpaper from their album. Writer and curator Paul Gorman showed 24 variations as part of the exhibition Process at CHELSEA space. During „ideal home‟ we will put a different cover at the front of the display each day

Frederick Etchells – Daily Mail Ideal Home Exhibition Rug 1913 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

The exhibition ideal home takes its title from an Omega Workshop Rug designed for the 1913 Daily Mail Ideal Home Exhibition held at Olympia, London. The Daily Mail included the avante-garde Omega group in what appears to be a cynical attempt to create anti-modern-art outrage. The fallout from the exhibition caused bitter feuds between members of the Omega Workshop and the Vorticist group; Etchell‟s seemingly benign and historic rug belies a story of utopian dreams turning into nightmares.

Yinka Shonibare – Doll House 2002 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

Shonibare questions assumptions about colonialism and cultural displacement. This doll‟s house is modelled on the Victorian townhouse where the artist lives and is decorated in the Dutch wax prints associated with black pride since the 1970‟s. The house includes a miniature of his photograph „Diary of A Victorian Dandy‟.

Bruce McLean – from the series Kilometre Theatre and Seven other Architectural Projects 1988 kindly loaned by the artist

2 prints dealing with the aspirations of the knock-through generation

James I Wolfsohn - The Marvel c. 1942 James I Wolfsohn Collection

Wolfsohn was a Berlin born architect who left Germany for London to escape the rise of fascism. This model is a proposal for a mobile dwelling with all the facilities labelled by hand.

Gavin Turk – Egg Seat 2008 private collection with thanks to Gavin Turk

In this work Gavin Turk transforms a perspex Philippe Starck „Ghost Chair‟ with an egg shape cut out of the seat, a bucket placed underneath and the back signed and dated by the artist. Created in aid of the Charity auction „Take your seats‟ in aid of Chelsea Arts Club Trust.

Catherine Frere-Smith – Garden Memories 2011 kindly loaned by the artist

The print on this textile depicts the house and garden in Kent where Catherine Frere-Smith grew up. A personal memory of an idyllic time and place.

Gary Woodley - Table 2010 kindly loaned by the artist

This multi-facetted table takes the cues for its acute angles from Gerrit Rietveld‟s Zig Zag Chair of 1934. Woodley‟s work can be seen widely throughout this exhibition as he has designed the plywood stool /plinths and the desk used to support other artworks and he created CHELSEA space‟s 5-part window bench.

James I Wolfsohn - Tin Can furniture c. 1942 kindly loaned by the Wolfsohn Collection

These hand cut tin furniture proposals accompany Wolfsohn‟s model for the „Marvel‟ mobile home and show an interesting set of possibilities for chair and table designs.

Jane Ashley – Laura Ashley Photo shoot 1975 kindly loaned by the artist

This striking image including Laura Ashley clothes and hand made Laura Ashley wallpaper was taken by Jane Ashley as part of a promotional shoot. This particular image was never used.

Joseph Crowdy – Diagram For A Legible Interior 2011 kindly loaned by the artist

Joseph Crowdy makes arrangements of objects - tubular steel stools with marble print papers and glass, photocopies and found objects such as large stones from the Norfolk coast. The arrangements use the language of modernism and museum display but their meaning remains enigmatic

Crispin Chetwynd – Fountain 2010 kindly loaned by the artist

A painting from a photograph of a lost iconic work by Marcel Duchamp. Despite the levels of removal from the original artwork Chetwynd‟s painting has its own material reality and the iconic value remains.

Steve Thomas - farts For Arts Sake 2011 courtesy of the artist

In this editioned print Steve Thomas takes one of his renowned designs for the Big Biba department store and piles them high. Whitmore Thomas designed the interiors, graphics, signage, and packaging for Big Biba creating one of the most memorable retail experiences of the 20th Century.
*This print is available for sale in an edition of 150 priced £290. 10% of sales will go towards the exhibition budget of CHELSEA space and 20% will go to Chelsea Arts Club Trust, a registered charity supporting art and design education

Alistair Hanson – Fire Extinguisher 2011 courtesy of the artist

A wooden (ie flammable) fire extinguisher so well crafted that it is almost overlooked.

Marcel Breuer – Long Chair 1935 private collection

Breuer studied under Gropius at the Bauhaus and later became Head of Furniture Design there. Gropius fled to Britain in 1934 to escape the rise of Fascism in Germany and Breuer joined him here in 1935. Gropius and Breuer both worked with Jack Pritchard for his newly established Isokon Furniture Company and the long chair was created during this period.

Bruce McLean – from the series Kilometre Theatre and Seven other Architectural Projects 1988 courtesy of the artist

2 prints dealing with the aspirations of the knock-through generation

Patrick Caulfield – Untitled (Smoking Pipe) 1997 kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

The expressive line of the pipe and smoke in this piece is not immediately recognisable as Caulfield but it does show his remarkable facility for painting. The isolated image of a pipe evokes a certain nostalgic image of home comfort and has affinities with Magritte‟s paintings “Ceci n‟est pas une pipe”.

Peter Fillingham – From Behind 2011 courtesy of the artist

Fillingham uses everyday objects to muse on questions of sculpture and colour. These objects would normally be vertical but, evoking the title of the piece, they have been pushed over and the hierarchy of biggest and tallest is diminished. Colour in the work is also democratised – a brightly coloured cooking spice or a fluorescent sticker is as potent as a tin of enamel paint or fine quality artist‟s pigments.

Bruce McLean & Gary Woodley 2009
Nine sculptures of Jugs on a Shelf Piece courtesy of the artists
Jugs: Bruce McLean, Shelves: Gary Woodley

One of many collaborations by McLean and Woodley, the jugs and vases are functional and at the same time are sculptures of jugs and vases, whilst the shelves are not “off the shelf” but instead are uniquely and oddly designed to accommodate the peculiarities of these ceramic sculptures.

Richard Woods – Dry Stone Plinth on Wheels 2011 courtesy of the artist

Richard Woods‟ fake dry stone walls on wheels are sized and coloured so perfectly that they seem to be recognised immediately as familiar objects. They are of a human scale to be leant or sat on and they have an exaggerated almost cartoon-like character that perhaps puts them in a category of archetypes not unlike a child‟s drawing of a house.

Rosie Farrell – Record With The Sound Of Its Own Making 2011 courtesy of the artist

A perfectly proportioned MDF plinth with a black speaker built in, displaying a top of the range sophisticated record player turntable. On the turntable is a 12” vinyl disc which plays the repetitive sounds of a record being cut.

Some of the artworks loaned by artists are available for sale. A donation of 10% from any such sale would be given by the artist to the CHELSEA space exhibition budget.
Details are available on request.


Sori Yanagi – Butterfly Stool 1954 private collection

This beautiful sculptural stool is made from two pieces of bent rosewood ply. This contemporary model is produced by Vitra

Jasper Johns – Technics and Creativity II 1970
The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

In this editioned artwork from 1970 Jasper Johns invites the owner to colour in John‟s drawn target using the paints and brush provided. John's iconic paintings of targets and flags raised the status and value of mundane everyday objects and this invitation to colour in his drawing proposes raising the status of viewer to artist and, in an era of mass production, challenges the notion of the creative genius.

Steve Thomas – Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out Rolling Stones Album cover 1970, Freixenet Cava bottle, John Player Special Reserve cigarette holders courtesy of the artist

Biba Baked Beans Tin and Biscuit Tin 1973 kindly loaned by Paul Gorman

The Art Deco influence in the design for the Rolling Stones 1969/70 live album Get Yer Ya Ya's Out becomes more refined in Steve Thomas's designs for John Player Special cigarettes and for Biba. Thomas later returned to his elegant black and gold livery in his distinctive designs for Freixenet cava.

General Idea – General Idea’s Putti 1993 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

A hand soap in the shape of a cute seal sitting on a printed beer mat made by a politicised Canadian art collective? A putto is a naked cherubic figure often found in Renaissance and Baroque art, taking its Italian name from the Latin word „putus‟ meaning little man. Like much of General Idea‟s work this editioned work deals with masculine identity. Tragically, within one year of this work being made, two of the three artists in the collective had died of AIDS.

Roy Lichtenstein – Paper Plate 1969 kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

This paper plate takes Lichtenstein's two dimensional stylised abstracted painting of a plate and turns it into a 3 dimensional functional object.

Richard Wentworth - Plate 1995 kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

Wentworth finds his sculptural ideas in everyday objects and places, in this case a broken white plate glued back together with a contrasting black adhesive. Rather than hide the cracks, this object clearly exposes its damaged past.

Barbara Kruger – I shop therefore I am 1990 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

In her distinctive use of photography overlayed with bold red bands of colour emblazoned with slogans Barbara Kruger uses the language of commercial advertising to explore consumerism, desire, power, and deception. A drinks coaster to make you think.

Robert Filliou – Optimistic Box No.3 1968 Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

A Fluxus fold up chess set by with all the pieces removed and the legend “so much the better if you can't play chess”.

Keith Coventry – Inhaler 1998 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

“What at first appears to be a true-to-size plastic model of an asthma inhaler turns into an object with a very different recent history. Life-enhancer for some, the inhaler, once redundant, takes on another life as a travelling pipe for the urban crack addict”

Cornelia Parker with Tilda Swinton – The Maybe 1995 The Library Chelsea College of Art

A chalice thrown from the White Cliffs of Dover and a miniature edition of a Shakespeare play. These unique objects were put together as part of a collaboration between artist Cornelia Parker and actress Tilda Swinton for the Serpentine Gallery. The centrepiece of the exhibition was a glass case in which the actress was displayed seemingly asleep. During gallery opening hours visitors would approach the living inscrutable display wondering whether Swinton was truly asleep or acting being asleep.

Sarah Staton – Cigarette and Ash Tray 1993 kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

Staton‟s squalid sculptures made of papier mache reflect impoverished lifestyles. However, the works themselves are made with great attention to detail, even abject pieces of ash are lovingly crafted.

Andrea Zittel – A-Z Sorting Trays 2001 kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

Zittel‟s work concerns art and daily life, she makes architectural structures, furniture, clothing, tools etc. A-Z Sorting Trays are a range of crafted plywood trays and bowls for containing miscellaneous small objects.

Paul Langworth – Portable Arson Kit 1997 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

The title of this work speaks for itself.

Eduardo Paolozzi – Nosferatos Rat 1997 kindly loaned by the Brehman Collection

It is commonly claimed that there is at least one rat for every person and that you are never more than a few feet away from a rat.

Gary Woodley – Material 2006 private collection

Gary Woodley makes site specific works, sculpture, furniture, and implements. This spatula is one of his elegant experiments in functional artworks.

David Shrigley – Heroin & Cocaine 2002 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

These widely available salt and pepper shakers appear as sculpted heaps of a white substance. An otherwise innocent cruet set is transformed by text.

Damien Hirst – Home Sweet Home 1996 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

This immaculate shiny new plate has abuse and failure already built into its surface in the form of a grim photograph of filthy used cigarette butts. It would be stomach turning to eat from the plate and reveal this unappetising image.

Daniel Robinson - make your own paper willow mountain 1999 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

The willow mountain is a popular motif in many bone china tea sets, a magical place to contemplate as you eat or drink. With this paper transfer pattern one need dream no longer - the 2D turns into 3D

Sarah Staton – Camel cigarette packet 1993

Like Staton‟s ashtray, this rather abject object is carefully made and beautifully detailed.

Lawrence Weiner – Plate 1987 The Library Chelsea College of Art and Design

The phrase Ab Ovo Usque Ad Mala means "from egg to apples" , similar to the English saying, "from soup to nuts," meaning from the start of the meal to the finish. An appropriate legend for a plate.

Isokon – Isokon Stool 1936 private collection

Jack Pritchard started the furniture side of Isokon in 1935 and the architects Walther Gropius and Marcel Breuer, amongst others, both worked on designs for the company. Isokon designs are now made under licence by Isokon Plus from the original designs and production techniques. The impossibly light Isokon stool was designed in 1933 and the designer is unknown.