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State of Craft Interview

Lilias Hart

Owner of Quaigh Design Centre
Dates Active: l960s on


We're going to have to reinvent ourselves, having crashed and burned our society, our financial systems. I hope that they'll look to some aspects of the craftspeoples' lives and see value in how they lived and what they did.

I immediately became aware of the passion they had for their coming here. They were ... searching for something. It was about an idea of how they wanted to live, how they wanted to bring up their children, and how they wanted to make something.

My life has run in parallel to theirs. I've been with them all the way. I have not done what they did because my job has been to provide a showcase... I want to be a part of their lives in the sense that I make a place for them to show their work.

Who's going to pick up your beautiful hand-thrown mug and say, "I'm quite happy to pay $18 or $25 for this beautiful mug because I have in my mind the vision of the potter in his or her studio, tucked away somewhere, you know, where the sound of the pine trees and the fresh air and the whole idea of the craft piece is way beyond just that somebody hand threw it?" It's the story.