By Leah Linhares
Photography: Courtesy the designer
IAnD follows the story of a master artisan, whose mellow but sophisticated style of work with floral-inspired lights has captured not only attention but acclaim, in the last decade...
New Zealand’s celebrated artisan Jeremy Cole, who won hearts and applause with his very first simple and elegant floral-inspired lights -Aloe Collection, was born into the world of design. Jeremy found inspiration in his mother - an interior designer, who influenced his aesthetics, instilling an appreciation for all things beautiful and refined, including a love for flora and ceramic!
Known by his signature style of large-scale luxurious designs, his passion for ceramics was sparked after a visit to London’s Tate Modern in 2004. Seeing an image of a near translucent ceramic vessel instantly inspired his fervour to explore the relationship between ceramics and light; and a couple of months later, Jeremy produced his first iconic Bone China piece - Aloe Blossom.
Resting his philosophy on beauty, elegance and craftsmanship, Jeremy describes himself as having a subconscious eye for beautiful flora. Working almost exclusively with Bone China, he terms it as a notoriously tricky medium that needs discipline and patience; not to mention the challenge of supporting the ceramic piece in the kiln to avert distortion.
Predominantly self taught, Jeremy’s constant experiments and challenges have aided his journey. Not only admired for its contemporary style and timeless beauty, but also for the care and skill each handmade piece entails, his designs embrace traditional methods of production with a modern flair.
He pushes the envelope of craftsmanship, with pieces like White Flax – a dramatically handcrafted piece of 350 ceramic leaves specifically arranged for even light distribution; or Chrysalis collection with a simple and elegant porcelain core, symbolic of the cocoon of a Butterfly’ or even the customizable, handcrafted porcelain ceramic vessel with porcelain flowers called Phalaenopsis Chandelier, with its flower stems lit via discreet lamp gear!
Recognised by the London Chamber of Commerce as one of the UK’s leading manufacturers, Jeremy dubs the Aloe Collection as his best work so far. When asked his secret to staying on top of the current design trends, the award-winning artisan expresses the importance to develop one’s own style and to be committed to that authenticity as much as possible.