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Friday, November 30, 2007

We couldn't make it to The Spell of Information, Deryck Walker's installation based on his trademark windmill symbol at SWG3 gallery in Glasgow, so we asked the Scottish-born, London-showing designer to fill us in...

"There were a few raised eyebrows on the opening night of the exhibition. As the crowd of friends, family and visitors arrived, I had the feeling that they were expecting some kind of Zoolander fashion show extravaganza, but were faced with a suspended installation made up of over 1000 windmills in the vast disused car showroom and gallery space of SWG3. It all started after I created a sculpture [left] last year for the Reindeer pop-up restaurant, where I interpreted the traditional Christmas tree, using over a hundred windmills of varying sizes suspended in motion. This time I needed to fill the large gallery space with my windmills and wanted to show visually how the movement of an idea might look. A slightly daunting task!

I started by stringing the smallest windmills from the ceiling and interlocking them with increasingly larger sizes. Slowly, the sculpture took shape. I enlisted the help of London filmmaker Ian Woodridge to document the process, as well as volunteers from local schools and colleges to help with the construction. We’ve also been inviting local students into the gallery for talks on creativity and multimedia. I feel in Scotland right now there’s an artistic freedom, an optimistic feeling where anything seems possible, and artists and designers are able to cross genres. Mutley, SWG3's curator, is also instrumental in this movement and has worked closely with Scottish talent such as Jim Lambie and Douglas Gordon.

Gaining recognition as a fashion designer over the past few years has been a great experience, but I feel that creativity doesn’t have to sit neatly within the boundaries of one's area of expertise, be it fashion, design, art or film. There are so many different ways of expressing yourself and they can all feed off and enrich each other. The installation so far has been a runaway success, but now it's time for my next project: London Fashion Week. Already!"