Julia Lohmann (1977 – )
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Transformation is the recurrent theme in the work of all the designers in Great Brits – The New Alchemists, yet one designer, Julia Lohmann, takes it to extremes. Intent on exploring the contradictions in our relationship to animals as sources of food and materials, she works with some of the basest and most banal materials – offal, off-cuts of leather and other waste products of the meat industry – with the aim of “giving value to leftovers”.
From a distance, her Ruminant Bloom lights look exquisite, if surreal - each a subtly different shape, colour and degree of translucence. As soon as you realise that each “bloom” is made from tripe – a preserved sheep’s stomach – the piece takes on a different meaning and “triggers feelings oscillating between attraction and disgust”. Like Lohmann’s cow benches, made in the shape of a cow’s torso and upholstered in a cow’s hide, her Ruminant Bloomsalso prompt us “to relive the childhood realisation that the piece of meat on one’s plate and the animal in the field are connected”.