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Meeting with Cambridge Art Makers

Abi L. Glen's profile image

Abi L. Glen

“You know, I really am keen to make sure we spend enough money on getting good design.”

” Said no-one, ever.”

I love artists. Good, bad, mediocre, ascending, jaded, pretentious, homespun— the lot. I am an artists’ groupie, Cynthia Plaster Caster but for literal plaster-casters. Why yes, I do want to see your etchings, friends, and your textile work, and your weird sound-recordings on warped vinyl. So this meeting with Susannah and Rosemary Bangham from the Cambridge Makers was a dream. We’ve been talking about ‘stimulating the local creative economy’ (an AHRC buzzphrase) since the nascent stages of this project, and what better way to do that than hire a cabal of painfully talented polymaths from Linton?

Susie and Ro co-ordinate Cambridge Makers alongside their dad, the venerable Daniel Bangham of Wood Wind and Reed, itself a beloved Cambridge institution. There is seemingly nothing crafty these three and their group of Art Tutors can’t do: silversmithing, quilting, cookery, paperwork, metalwork, musical instrument repair… The list is long and their outputs exquisite, and I knew they’d be perfect to design our CEEF logo and the mailer boxes for our subscription services.

Over a lot of cake and more chatter, the Bangham sisters have already exceeded my hopes for the boxes. It’s speaking to true craftspeople—where you can babble on in a vague fashion about colours and shapes, and they somehow manage to interpret it into something viable and, more importantly, beautiful. I can’t give away too much yet, but some of the ideas we’ve discussed are hand-printed box sleeves, interpretations of the Baroque feast in painted form, and something pineapple-y, in keeping with the Fitz’s railings and the running visual theme of Eat Feast Fast.

Pineapple railing

I’ll make sure to keep you all updated on the prototypes and design meetings, and—not to put undue pressure on Ro and Susie, who have to actually go and design the stuff now—but seriously, you guys know how good this is going to be?

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