At the Workhouse Gallery we work with makers from across the UK and we especially enjoy working with inspiring designers and craftspeople such as Tovi Sorga.
Founded by artist and leather jeweller Tovi Sorga, Bristol based accessories brand Tovi Sorga produces some of the finest leather finishes available today. At the heart of the work are rich, delicate prints.The unique printing technique, honed by Tovi over the past decade, helps create the unparalleled depth and richness for which his work has become reknowned.
Avoiding the flat, often mechanical effect of much digital printing on leather, bold colour is fixed in such a way as to allow high definition and range. Celebrating Tovi and his partner Agnes Davis’ love for nature, purses, wallets and journals are covered with flowers from an English summer and a Dutch spring, the impressions of lace and decoupage roses. Vibrant charms cut into the shape of butterflies and fish are printed with wonderful accuracy, mimicking the natural creatures themselves.
Dutch Spring Wallet (available at The Workhouse Gallery)
Marmaduke Butterfly keyring at The Workhouse Gallery
Working from their studio in the vibrant hub of Bristol’s Stokes Croft, Tovi designs and works with his partner, Agnes Davis. Agnes is a writer by trade, and a poet at heart, but fell in love with Tovi and his work when they met several years ago.
Their creative partnership has led to new developments for the business, with Agnes taking on the web-design, photography, PR and marketing which enables Tovi to concentrate on meeting the ever-growing demand for their collections.
Texture and a craftsman’s adoration for material are key to Tovi’s work. The finest leather hides are selected and treated by Tovi himself to achieve his trademark ‘buttery’ texture.
Tovi prints the leather using a digital process, and crafts his products on a hand turned vintage Singer sewing machine – one of the most essential tools in the trade to achieve absolute accuracy and control.
Traditional leather craft tools and techniques are then applied to create a hardwearing and luxurious finish. It’s a particularly difficult process to achieve success with, as the durability of the surface, tactility of the leather and definition of the design all need expert handling to achieve this superb finish.
Tovi’s work has become well known around the world. He has received commissions from the Royal Academy and Rijksmuseum, and also undertaken collaborations with other creators, including corset designer, Lisa Keating, tebori tattoo artist, David J Watt, and wallpaper designer, Juliet Chadwick.
Essential to Tovi and Agnes’ creative ethos is the sustainability of their work. Tovi only uses leathers that are recycled as a waste product of the food industry, from trusted British suppliers, who meet strict European standards of animal and worker welfare. Leather is carefully sourced to create as low a carbon footprint as possible. Packaging is British-made from recycled and biodegradable materials wherever possible.
English Summer wallet at The Workhouse Gallery
More about Tovi Sorga here www.tovisorga.com