Shopping & Design: Design Lines

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THE NOTION of making the same object over and over again till you are able to produce a near-perfect version of it was one of which potter supremo Bernard Leach was particularly fond.

Such a philosophy is no longer at the cutting edge of the crafts world, however. At a time when the machine-made dominates and the whole point of the hand-made seems to be originality and imperfection, the role of repetition is fraught.

In their new show, (Un)Limited, the Crafts Council looks at the value of differences and likenesses and the way in which a maker engages with ideas as well as with his materials. Among those represented will be Belgian Piet Stockmans, whose 6,000 ceramic crucible forms fill one room, masterly Peter Collingwood and his 3D weavings, Australian ceramicist Gwyn Hanssen Pigott (her porcelain "Passegiata" is shown below) and silversmith Simone Ton Hempel.

(Un)Limited: Repetition and Change in International Craft runs from 1 April to 6 June at the Crafts Council, 44a Pentonville Road, London N1 9BY (0171 278 7700)

WHEN IS a chair not a chair? When it's an artwork in Furniture II at the innovative London gallery of Richard Salmon. It contains work by sometime furniture makers such as Nicholas Alvis-Vega as well as Richard Wentworth and Rachel Whiteread; the chief criteria for pieces is that they are unusable.

Furniture II is at Richard Salmon, Studio 4, 59 South Edwards Square, London W8 6HW until 10 April.

IN THE 19th century hundreds of country potteries operated around Britain. Today only a handful survive, among them Wetheriggs in Cumbria - declared a National Industrial Monument in 1973. Wetheriggs is launching Pots of Fun today, in which visitors can throw their own pot and even decorate it with a slipware message in true 17th-century style. On Good Friday, Fred Dibnah joins in the fun.

Pots of Fun and Wetheriggs site (Clifton Dykes, Penrith, Cumbria CA10 2DH; tel: 01768 892 733) are open April to October, Monday to Sunday, 10am to 5.30pm; November to March, Wednesday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm.

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