Graduate Bonnie Mustoe-Whitehill scoops Runner-Up prize at New Designers
BA (Hons) Craft and Material Practices graduate Bonnie Mustoe-Whitehill won the Runner-Up prize of £500 for New Designer of the Year for her work 'Complete Collection of Tactile Objects' at this year’s New Designers.
Bonnie is a research-led, mixed-media artist who incorporates methods of play and the psychology of touch to inspire her creative practice. The prize-winning work, “Complete Collection of Tactile Objects”, was described by judges as “showing experimental materials at the heart of design, broadening perspectives of Jewellery in a post-Covid world encouraging touch and relationship with objects.” It is an exploration of materials such as glass, fine metals and rubber, experimented with through different casting methods to create a variety of tangible objects that audiences are encouraged to interact with.
Bonnie said, “The whole experience was very surreal and I’m hugely grateful to have been considered, let alone given such a prestigious award! The lead up to this unexpected event was a long one to say the least, all of the sweat, tears and late nights were worth it after all! Everyone who has helped me along the way in some shape or form should know that I appreciate them hugely and I couldn’t have done it without their support.”
Bonnie’s curiosity around touch and play has guided her interest in creating tactile objects for the benefit of the user, whether that is in a visual, mental or physical sense with her time spent living alongside nature in the Cotswolds, Devon and Cornwall inspiring her to use tactile natural forms as inspirations within her work. Through her studies, Bonnie has also gained experience with jewellery-making and combines these skills with her mixed media work to create playful jewellery.
Bonnie said, “I've gained much of my material knowledge from the talented technicians at Arts University Plymouth. Their continual support has given me the confidence to take advantage of the fantastic facilities available, encouraging experimentation and play, and always challenging me and pushing me further.”
Looking forward, Bonnie wants to continue to grow her collection of tactile objects, possibly creating 'sensory toolkits' for people to purchase, and also look at ways in which the objects can be used as tools to other people's advantage - whether that is through creative sensory workshops in schools or to aid people with dementia.
BA (Hons) Craft and Materials Practices allows students to explore the art of traditional making alongside the rapid digital prototyping facilities in our Fab Lab, focused around providing the resources to reinvent craft for the 21st century through the use of state-of-the-art facilities dedicated to glass, ceramics, metals and wood alongside new and innovative creative techniques and materials to encourage creative and inventive thinking and making.