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brings brand-enhancing paper design to the USA with Gerald the dog


PAPER FROM LOVE LETTERS TO FIREWORKS, FROM YOUR MORNING COFFEE CUP TO THE HOTTEST TICKET IN TOWN, PAPER IS EVERYTHING FROM A CARRIER OF LONG-LIVED MEMORIES TO A VESSEL FOR LIFE-GIVING ENERGY. BUT PERHAPS MOST EXCITINGLY OF ALL, PAPER GIVES US ALL A BLANK CANVAS.


LAZERIAN & JAMES CROPPER COLLABORATION British design house Lazerian and James Cropper, collaborated to bring the Gerald & James exhibition to New York in May 2013. This exhibition showcased 101 LIMITED EDITION artist designed dogs & 19 ONE OFF PAPER SCULPTURES to an international audience and also marked the launch of a limited edition book, published by James Cropper.


WHO IS GERALD? Gerald is a seamless blend of art and technology.  Designed by Lazerian’s Liam Hopkins and 3D designers Richard Sweeney, it was thereafter – by invitation only – customised by 105 of the world’s leading image makers, from graffiti and street artists to commercial designers and editorial illustrators.  It is increasingly recognised as a rising star in contemporary design having secured the attention of the international art and design media.


WHO IS JAMES? Of course he represents the company, but he is more as well. On one hand, he is a person, or rather several tradition has it that every second generation of the Cropper family takes the name, which continues to this day. He is also many more people – five hundred in fact – who every day devote themselves to furthering the art and science of paper-making at Burneside. And last and not least, James is also now a dog. Lazerian carefully crafted James out of one of our luxurious Suede papers.


THE JOURNEY Starting in 2011, hundreds of paper dogs (all forged from paper made by James Cropper) were shipped from the UK to artists’ studios in Europe, USA, Australia, Argentina, South Korea and New Zealand, with the only instruction to creatives being to put their own spin on the emerging design classic.


AT THE MILL Stood on four legs with his nose proudly pointed to the air, the free standing model of a Bracco Italiano breed of gun dog is made entirely of James Cropper paper and uses up to 88 individual components for each large format dog. His construction is a prime example of great design giving strength and grace to the most unlikely and under-appreciated of materials.


LANDING IN NEW YORK Now that all the Geralds have been returned to their master, and with support provided by James Cropper, it was possible to experience and see the beautiful, bold and brash results together for the first time. From shipping 120 fragile paper dogs from the UK to New York, to ensuring our custom die-cut invitations arrived in the US in good time, the Gerald and James exhibition has been a challenging and exhilarating project.


A TOURIST IN NEW YORK The paper sculptures in the form of Gerald and James had the opportunity to stretch their legs around New York and to take in some of the beautiful and iconic sights before the Private View in Manhattan. It was an exciting and wonderful experience.


AT HOME IN NEW YORK To mark an increased focus on business development IN THE USA for James Cropper, hundreds gathered at a special preview event to unveil the results of the two year Gerald Project, OPENING an exhibition of paper dog sculptures, customised by the world’s leading image makers. A travelling delegation from James Cropper plc joined colleagues and invited guests at the launch of the Gerald and James exhibition IN MANHATTAN on Thursday 16 May 2013, heralding an invigorated period of development of the 170 year old company’s trade within the US market.


PRIVATE VIEW James Cropper is known by many by our reputation for quality and innovation, and we constantly strive to push the boundaries of what paper can do. Whilst we are ambitious, and encourage our collaborators and clients to be ambitious with us, it is our innovation in sustainability and conservation, as well as the development of remarkable paper products, which sets us apart. By being part of NYCxDesign and through the Gerald & James exhibition, we hope to make more friends aware of our capabilities and ambitions.


BOOK SIGNING The success of Gerald is also being celebrated with the launch of a limited edition fine-art book, published by James Cropper. Fittingly, with this book Gerald has also allowed us to make our first foray into publishing. Printed matter still has a central place in our digital age, but with an important twist. As publishers move away from mass production, the book is becoming a rarer, more prized object to be enjoyed for the luxuriousness of its design and materials as well as its content – an ideal outlet for our papers, as exemplified herein.


THE NEXT CHAPTER James Cropper is a bespoke maker of the world’s finest colour papers based in the Lake District, England’s first and foremost National Park. With a paper-making heritage that started in 1753, since 1845 the business has been carefully stewarded and nurtured by six generations of the Cropper family. In the twenty-first century James Cropper enjoys a global reputation, not least for its luxury packaging papers, which clothe many of the world’s leading brands, while the world’s leading artists, galleries and museums use its framing and archival boards alongside its conventional artists materials. James Cropper also develops advanced materials, based on carbon and other fibres, which play a key part in new approaches and architectures in the automotive and aerospace sectors.


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James Cropper Gerald & James