Habitat Platform organised a special talk evening called What makes colour contemporary? based on their present exhibition called Full Colour. The exhibition explores the complexities of our understanding of colour through the eyes of the abstract painter and established colour theorist, Garth Lewis.
Gart has developed a unique technique for his paintings. He uses ink-jet printing, direct printing and hand painting which are all applied onto a computer-generated composition. Developing this way of painting between analogue and virtual colours has been a long process. One advantage Garth mentions is the vibrancy of colours that you get using digital printing.
Garth has also developed software programs: A Virtual Colour Course and Chromafile, a virtual palette that simulates paint colour based on his long career and in-depth knowledge of colour theories. I had a pleasure to attend Garth’s colour course, while I was a textile student at St. Martin’s, and it was the most that I never learnt about colours.
Rebecca Hoyes is the Design Manager at Habitat. She talked about the importance of colour as a part of the Habitat’s product offering. The palette is designed by the in-house design team. At the moment key colours include Cobalt blue, Tomato red and Saffron yellow.
Part of Rebecca’s job is to go to global product development trips to meet the local craft specialist as craft plays an important part in the Habitat collection. It is vital to be able to communicate the design story also back to customers, as it highlights the uniqueness and authenticity of the products.