From Frieze Art Fair to Fendi handbags, the bold, bright art and idiosyncratic ceramics of John Booth are a charming twist on the sometimes conservative industries of luxury fashion and fine art.
The Scottish-born, Cumbria-raised artist drew obsessively as a youngster and was encouraged to pursue his passion by former mentors John Galliano and Zandra Rhodes, who he interned with while studying fashion print design at Central Saint Martins. Since graduating in 2009, Booth has continued to work alongside some of the best names in luxury fashion – most notably British designer Lou Dalton and revolutionising Italian fashion house Fendi’s menswear line – while expanding on his unique, graphic style to create work in textiles, stickers and ceramics.
This summer, Booth unveils his latest collaborative project: a capsule collection of characteristically colourful leather goods for Globe-Trotter. This limited-edition range of stylish travel accessories, including passport holders, key fobs, a card holder, coin purse and even a pencil case, is designed with Booth’s trademark abstract shapes and bright colours emblazoned in foiling on the smooth leather exteriors.
‘Collaboration is important to me as it allows me to experiment and apply my aesthetic to things I wouldn't usually be able to produce – it keeps things interesting for me,’ explains Booth. ‘I approached Globe-Trotter as it’s a company that I wanted to collaborate with. I had a few vague ideas of what I wanted to work on with the brand and I definitely had freedom to experiment on this project, it was really fun.’
Every piece in the range can be clipped onto a stylish leather lanyard, offering the opportunity to playfully mix and match different shapes and colours as well as providing ease of movement while on the go. The collection was inspired by Booth’s recent trip to Japan, where he noted the way locals made practical items ‘look decorative.’
‘In terms of the colours and paint splodges used in the range, I see them as a fun extension of my studio practice, using tones and shapes that I use in my other works,’ he adds.
The collection launches during Mayfair Art Weekend, with Booth performing a live demonstration at Globe-Trotter’s flagship Mayfair boutique. The workshop will see the artist painting directly onto Globe-Trotter products, adding yet another handmade element to create something that’s truly one-of-a-kind.
Collaboration, it seems, is key, and Booth is keen to work his magic on more and more products in the near future including interiors, wallpaper and furniture. ‘I just want to keep producing and developing my own work, and to collaborate more,’ he says. ‘Basically to keep making stuff.’