Maria Balshaw is Director of Tate, a role she has held since June 2017. She has overall responsibility for Tate's strategic direction and day to day operations. As Director, Maria is also the Accounting Officer appointed by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). Previously, Maria was the Director of the Whitworth, University of Manchester; Manchester City Galleries and was the Director of Culture for Manchester City Council. Maria holds a BA in English Literature and Cultural Studies from the University of Liverpool, and an MA in Critical Theory and a DPhil in African American Visual and Literary Culture from the University of Sussex. Maria is a Board Member of The Clore Leadership Programme and Manchester International Festival. Maria was awarded a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours for services to the arts in June 2015.
Max Lamb’s work plays with the tradition of the working rural landscape – the Cornish beach as a foundry, the granite quarry as a workshop, felled yew trees of the Chatsworth estate as subject and source material. He is equally fascinated by the city, and his ability to adapt and respond to different environments produces designs that are uniquely of their time and place.
Max is not committed to a single material or process, nor is he attracted to design as a means to solve problems. Rather he exploits the qualities inherent in a material to draw out its natural tendencies and beauty. His methods are high- and low-tech, and he is both designer and manufacturer, collaborating with foundries and factories as the scale or complexity of the project necessitates. His interest in exploring both traditional and unconventional ways of making has resulted in a diverse body of work. However, there is continuity in the principles that he applies – honesty to material, a celebration of the process and of human capability, and its limitations.
For over 25 years the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) has been at the forefront of international wood promotion, successfully building a distinctive and creative brand for U.S. hardwoods. AHEC’s global programme of activities secure a future for American hardwoods by demonstrating the performance and aesthetic potential of these sustainable materials, while providing valuable creative inspiration and technical advice.
Benchmark is a leading company of craftspeople and designers, founded 30 years ago by Sir Terence Conran and Sean Sutcliffe. Based in West Berkshire on a converted farm, the team is now 50 strong in over 40,000 sq ft of workshops for timber milling, carpentry, veneering, spraying, specialist metalworking and upholstery, as well as design studio and furniture showroom. Benchmark works extensively on design solutions for hotels, restaurants, public buildings, offices and private residences.
The London Design Festival is a key constituent of London’s autumn creative season, alongside London Fashion Week, Frieze Art Fair and the London Film Festival. Established in 2003 its role is to celebrate and promote London as the world’s design capital and gateway to the international design community and it has now established a reputation as one of the largest and most exciting design events in the world. This year the Festival will run from 15-23 September and over 400 events and installations will be on offer across the capital, from an exciting programme at the V&A to plus over 300 partners who will participate in the nine-day Festival.
The Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) is the world’s leading museum of art and design, housing a permanent collection of over 2.3 million objects that span over 5,000 years of human creativity. The Museum holds many of the UK's national collections and houses some of the greatest resources for the study of architecture, furniture, fashion, textiles, photography, sculpture, painting, jewellery, glass, ceramics, book arts, Asian art and design, theatre and performance.