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Published Sun, 06 Nov 2022
Claire Hammon x Lamplight Books

A friend of Lamplight Books, our Creative Director – Claire Hammon had the opportunity to share some of her favourite books, from her own personal collection.

Books are an important source of inspiration for me, the tactile nature of the paper, the calmness through great design. Books are magical and mysterious, they mark a moment in time just like jewellery, they both give a sense of solace, beauty, hope and nostalgia.

My favourite part of my home is our bookshelf, I feel a sort of warmth by being surrounded by books full of intense and singular creativity. I am looking forward to it being completely overfull as I get older.

Juergen Teller (1995)

I purchased this book as a teenager in the '90s and I reference it regularly. There was something so simple about photography back then. There wasn’t this outside influence of social media, it was all on the street. And you really had to work hard to seek out inspiration.

Juergen Teller is known for his stark photography style, direct and candid, there's a rebellion that comes through in his work which resonates with me. He has shot some super iconic images and some of my favourite fashion campaigns ever.

I’ve collected many books and lost many along the way but this one has always been with me. Although I’ve always loved it, it’s only in recent years I have realised how special and rare it is, and I can’t quite believe I made such a smart move as a teenager. For fashion photography fans, I highly recommend his more recent book Handbags.

Martin Margiela - The Women’s Collections 1989-2009 (2018) by Alexandre Samson

I recently purchased this book from Lamplight and it has brought back so many memories. From the first time I saw Margiela's work in a magazine when I was about 15, to the first time I saw his clothing in real life, maybe a year later and was fascinated by the blank labels, a sort of insiders only thing back then.

There’s only a few fashion designers I am moved by, ones I would consider artists using the medium of fashion. Martin Margiela is the ultimate inspiration. Known for his deconstruction style, it isn’t for everyone but it’s undeniable the impact he has had on designers ever since.

I love his anonymity, he’s an enigma, making sure people’s attention was focussing on the work, it’s really opposite to everything that has happened in the world in more recent times.

On the Necessity of Gardening (2021) by Laurie Cluitmans

Another recent purchase from Lamplight – it’s a kooky A-Z of gardening history, essays, poetry & le jardin’s connection and source of inspiration to art & culture.

I love this book visually but it also came at a time I most needed it, a reminder that we need to feel a connection with nature. When you garden you can’t help but ponder life, health and connection. It's a respite from the stress of the world and it’s easy to forget how good it is for our wellbeing.

Gardens and botanicals have always featured in art and culture. For me, flowers have been a recurring theme in our jewellery at Meadowlark and in imagery I’ve created since we began.

This book is also about planting humans in different locations. There’s just too much in this book to talk about. I recommend getting a copy for yourself, it’s exceptional!

Spiegel Der Venus (Mirror of Venus) (1966) by Wingate Paine

Wingate Paine was an American photographer in the '60s. I don’t know a lot about this book as my copy is in German, but it’s full of sensual black & white images that are playful, sweet and probably quite risqué when it was first published. I recommend it for anyone making imagery.

Another one I reference almost every time I plan a photoshoot, it’s really inspiring for beauty style shots.

They are iconic timeless images that are so simple and perfect.

Dieter Rams: The Complete Works (2020) by Klaus Klemp and Dieter Rams: As Little Design As Possible (2011) by Sophie Lovell, Jony Ive, Klaus Kemp

Anyone who knows me well, knows I have an obsession with Dieter Rams. My home and my office are full of his Vitsoe pieces and my book collection is proudly housed in his shelving system.

He really is the godfather of modern design. You will know his work with Braun – so many everyday objects in the home designed in the most minimal way possible, they still look timeless to this day.

I believe design is so important – to be surrounded by beauty, even if people don’t realise the objects are special, they have a deep effect on how we feel in our spaces. Dieter's work is always about functionality and aesthetics, it instills a real sense of calm for me.

I have put two books in here, both were gifted to me from my husband. I also recommend searching out the Rams documentary by Gary Hustwit!

Disassembly (2014) by Bownik

This book is so inspiring to me – again it’s flowers, a recurring theme for me always. To me it's also about perfection and imperfection, flowers are deconstructed and reassembled as perfectly as possible, with visible everyday objects, tape, pins and rubber bands, a sort of botanical surgery.

Our work for Meadowlark is always perfectly finished, so the work I create outside of jewellery is a reaction to that, an undoing of perfection, similar but different to what I love about this book. What drives me is adding beauty to a world that can be so full of sadness, and I think books in all their forms do this too. It’s one of the most relaxing and greatest pleasures in life x

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