Barry Llewellyn transformed a space
into a soup of colour and texture.

Tucked away in a vitrine on a quiet street in Eindhoven, Netherlands, designer Barry Llewellyn has crafted a display of works which blur the lines between fiction and reality. Using a diverse selection of materials, he explores how they can flow in a natural manner.


From the richly textured, organic forms in Llewellyn’s work, it becomes clear that the inclinations of nature play an important role in their fabrication. Taking a posthumanist perspective, he realises that many of our systemic tendencies can be closely linked with natural occurrences, despite our departure from the natural world.

For example how the make‐up of roads across cities and countries can resemble fungal networks by branching, merging and converging in some areas. “When we are aware that we are creating, we often begin working in a more calculated manner”, he believes. “I wanted to explore creating in a way where the material has a greater autonomy to transform in ways that are respective of its characteristics.”

Visiting Llewellyn’s studio, one may be overwhelmed by the plethora of artefacts, occupying the available shelf space. The stacks of objects are arranged from found materials, such as pieces of broken ceramic sinks or plastic toys, to new, clean materials such as sheet metal. In Llewellyn’s eyes, all forms of material are valued equally and can reveal an engaging story about life in the past, or reveal an insight into our current reality. “Found artefacts not only give me a cultural insight into a bygone era”, he says. “They also suggest the artefact’s use, through scratches, fractures or wear. The deterioration of objects begins to reveal the material’s natural characteristics, and provides me with inspiration for how I can use it in a playful manner.”

By applying loose gestures to the materials, such as through hammering, melting, pulling or bending, the material begin to unfold, revealing a more fluid, organic spectacle. Once the material samples are created, almost like matter in a petri dish, Llewellyn begins to explore how they can be grown. He invites the samples to mingle with each other, creating a mixing pot of texture and hue, where elements can repel and attract to one another, floating in the current until they find a match. The process of collaging materials is quite an intuitive approach, guided by how forms fit together based on their scale, finish and colour. Without predetermined parameters, the objects come together in a seemingly sporadic, innate manner.

For his first solo show ‘Neo Normality’ in Eindhoven at the Salon Venman, Llewellyn has transformed the project space of Salon Venman into an oasis for reflection and discovery.

Photos and text by Barry Llewellyn



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