The cover of last month’s issue of Creative Review featured an illustration of by graphic artist Emily Alston a.k.a. Emily Forgot. We’d asked her to respond to the theme of the issue – Getting Started. Her image of a room with many possible routes of escape and further exploration captured what we were after perfectly.
It also reflects her current pre-occupation with interior design and architecture. “Something I’ve always embraced is the idea of getting inspiration from disciplines outside of my own field and for the past few years interior design and architecture have become more of an obsession,” she says.
This obsession, Alston explains, was fuelled by travels to Le Corbusier’s Cité Radieuse in Marseille and Mallet-Stevens’ modernist Villa Noailles in Hyeres. Last year, she was commissioned to illustrate the cover of Paul Davies’ book Architecture History Retold which compounded her love for buildings by introducing her to the work of architects like Claude-Nicolas Ledoux, Adolf Loos and Robert Venturi.
All these influences began to make their way into her sketchbook, informing her choice of colour, shape and composition. They have now found expression in Neverland, a body of work in which Alston explores her “personal passion for buildings and spaces both real, remembered and imagined”.
For the last few months she stopped working on all commissions to focus simply on this body of self-initiated work. “It’s easy to feel jaded at times when you work commercially and it’s been so refreshing to completely direct myself and make for the joy of making,” she says.
This process of working without a brief has allowed her to explore new techniques and media. Her experience with creating window displays and installations enabled her to think beyond flat images. “It felt quite natural to me to think about how to turn flat renders and drawings into things that have more dimension, I liked the idea of creating something that is both an object and an image.”
Emily Forgot’s Neverland is a series of drawings, collage and assemblage pieces, and even includes domestic objects, like a chair made in collaboration with craftsmen Charlie Mckenzie and a rug made with Ceadogan.
Neverland will be at KK Outlet from 2 to 30 September.