Make the Most - Laura Ellen Bacon 2013. Photo: Seb King

Working with partners Craftspace and the National Trust, a vibrant exhibition of contemporary craft, sourced locally, nationally and internationally was showcased at Barrington Court, Somerset.

Make the Most (2013)


Somerset’s magnificent Barrington Court was transformed in September 2013 by five internationally-renowned makers. Using locally sourced willow, paper, wood, leather and stone, the new dynamic works  acknowledged the contribution of the local raw material suppliers and local manufacturers to the local economy and ecology of the county.

The Make the Most exhibition was the  key note within the Somerset Art Weeks 2013 festival.

Laura Ellen Bacon’s  large-scale willow work graced and augmented Barrington Court’s ‘Old Kitchen’, in collaboration with Musgrove Willows in Bridgwater.

Maeve Clancy’s paper work featured within the Great Hall. Maeve collaborated with the Two Rivers Paper Company, to redefine this glorious space with large-scale cut paper installations incorporating a narrative about the history of Barrington Court and its gardens. To help in the process artist/maker Julie Roberts led school paper-making workshops.

Make the Most was an initiative of Somerset Art Works in partnership with the National Trust at Barrington Court, and curated by Craftspace.

The five commissions for the exhibition by five artists:

Laura Ellen Bacon – Willow, paired with Somerset supplier Musgrove Willows.   Visit her blog here!

Maeve Clancy – Paper, paired with supplier Two Rivers Paper Company. . Follow her blog here!

Thomas Appleton – Stone, paired with supplier Harvey Stone Quarry and Stonemasons 

Gary Allson – Wood, paired with supplier Yandles of Martock. A new work using digital milling machines. For more details about his installation click here!

Laura Youngson Coll – Leather, paired with Burfield and Co (gloves) ltd. Lauras project blog can be seen here!  

In addition, the ‘Treasures of Somerset’ programme  featured a selection of six local makers in order to highlight the vitality and wealth of craft practitioners whose work in not always seen locally.  The six local artists featured in the exhibition as ‘treasures of Somerset’ were Mike Dodd – ceramics, Tom Kealy – furniture, James Horrobin – blacksmith, Patrick Reyntiens – stained glass, Caroline Lytton – fine metalwork and Jacy Wall – textiles.

Three Films by James Price and Will Bix, supported by Somerset Film, were made and shown as part of the interpretation, along with a catalogue and workbooks featuring the processes of each supplier.

Make the most  Guest Curator intro

Laura Ellen Bacon  – partner Musgrove Willow

Maeve Clancy – partner Two Rivers Paper