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The North of England has produced some of the most innovative and respected creative individuals the world has seen. Illustrious names as Henry Moore, Dame Vivienne Westwood, Damien Hirst, Danny Boyle, David Hockney, Peter Saville and Jonathan Ive illustrate the wealth of talent that the North produces.

Creative innovation is integral to the renaissance of the North; Northern Futures celebrates the future talent emerging from the region, seeking to identify and encourage the future Westwoods, Hockneys, Boyles and Savilles into successful creative careers. The showcase aims to cement the North as a hotbed of new creativity and exposes our talent to the world.

Northern Futures counterpoints and compliments more London based design initiatives. We are passionate about the North of England and proud to champion, and raise the profile of, emerging creative talent.

Overview 2014

The 2014 showcase recognises and promotes the best emerging creative talent in the North of England through a curated exhibition at MADE NORTH gallery confirming the North as a hotbed of creativity. The exhibition is a lead in to the 2015 Northern Futures Awards which will form part of Sheffield Design Week in June.

Each year Northern Futures focuses on the following categories through either a curated showcase or awards:

Furniture & Product Design

Graphic Design & Illustration

Textiles, Fashion & Accessories

Contemporary Craft



Some of the best creative design talent is to be found in the north of England many successful northern designers have been profiled at the Design Museum, London. I am very pleased to be able to be part of Northern Futures Award, an exciting initiative which identifies the creatives of tomorrow and which gives young product designers a significant opportunity to showcase their work.

Donna Loveday, Head of Curatorial, Design Museum, London,


The showcase of work will be at the MADE NORTH Gallery from November 5th to December 20th 2014.
We will shortly be announcing the designer/makers included in the Northern Futures showcase, please send your email address to be added to our Northern Futures Newsletter.

Northern Futures is organised by MADE NORTH,  providing a creative platform that actively encourages and promotes understanding of contemporary northern design with UK and international audiences.

MADE NORTH represents a network of designer/makers who we collaborate with to showcase the finest quality contemporary designs, materials, skills and products the north of England has to offer. We carefully curate our selection and seek out designer/makers and objects that illustrate a sense of place, personality and provenance from our region and its accepted values of industry, honesty, integrity and innovation.

Find out more at





Conny Freyer, Co-founder, Troika, London, says

This time, and the period we are heading into, is extremely exciting, for Northern Futures, and for the creative sector as a whole. Northern Futures has an obligation and an opportunity to foster a greater understanding of what creatives do and how they do it, and voice an opinion on the creative issues which affect people’s daily lives. Above all, award schemes like the Northern Futures are our mainline link to the next generation of talent holding an invaluable potential to inspire the development of young artists and designers. The positive impact that awards like the Northern Futures has on young creatives is tremendous. It gives them confidence to keep moving forward. It is an honor for me to have been a judge for Northern Futures.

2015 Award

We will launch a new Award in 2015 as part of Sheffield Design Week. As a lead in to this, we are curating a selection of the most promising designer/makers and ones to watch to showcase with an exhibition at MADE NORTH Gallery in Sheffield in November/December 2014 .
The 2015 Awards will again attract an industry leading judging panel selecting work across:

Furniture & Product Design

Graphic Design & Illustration

Textiles, Fashion & Accessories

Contemporary Craft

We will announce the entry process for next year shortly.

Furniture & Product Design /////////// Graphic Design & Illustration /////////// Textiles, Fashion & Accessories /////////// Contemporary Craft


For more information about Northern Futures, including press images, logos and additional information about showcase please contact:

Patrick Murphy
Platform for northern Design & Craft
Yorkshire Artspace
21 Brown Street
S1 2BS

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Caroline Cooper Charles, Head of Creative Development, Warp Films says:

It’s been a real honour and delight to be involved in judging the Northern Futures film category. So many events and awards fail to recognise the wealth of creative talent that exists outside London and seeing so many fantastic films shortlisted together was a great reminder of what they are missing?