Cabinet of Curiosity are textile/costume artist Caroline Collinge & architect Edmond Salter.
They work with paper materials & techniques to make exhibitions, installations & participatory arts activities for commissions with heritage sites, arts organisations, museums & the community.


Tuesday, 27 December 2011


The Mulberry School for Girls in London studied the Anacostia. 
Panel designed with artists Caroline Collinge and Edmond Salter.
Artwork from Rivers of the World 2011 is currently being exhibited from November 2011 through February 2012 in Washington's Yards Park – a stunning development on the Anacostia River. For directions and more information, please visit www.yardspark.org.

Rivers of the World is the Thames Festival Trust’s flagship art and education project and is delivered in partnership with the British Council’s Connecting Classrooms, and with support from HSBC Global Education Trust.

To see all the artwork produced globally through Rivers of the World this year, view this gallery.

Thursday, 15 December 2011


Cabinet of Curiosity: jotta artist contributes to lifesize advent calendar
By Millie Ross –  15.12.2011
The festive season signals a few exciting prospects, mince pies, mulled wine, and advent calendars! The Architecture Foundation and Brent Council have joined forces to create a life-size advent calendar on Willesden Green, with emerging artists and designers bringing the shop windows of the high street to life. jotta member Caroline Collinge transforms The Samaritans.
The local shops participating in the project include the jewellers, barbers, a kebab shop, a pound shop, Caribbean snack supplies, a gift shop and the local hair stylist. Day by day until Christmas, 25 local shops and businesses will play host to the creations of wildly inventive design teams who will make each shopfront into a life-sized advent adventure.
When the project was first dreamed up a month ago, the call out was placed on jotta and beyond, and submissions to contribute designs flooded in from all over the world. The chosen design teams include architects, film set designers, product designers, fashion designers, cabinet makers, art directors, graphic designers and even a film-maker.
One of that talented bunch is jotta member Caroline Collinge, who works across film, installation and performance, while also reseraching the Baroque and performance design for a PhD at London College of Fashion. Her recent solo exhibition, A Picture Unfolds, utilised origami, costume and architectural elements to recreate the fascinating story of the London A-Z, building an architectural fantasy of the city streets which the map's creator, Phyllis Pearsall, obsessively traversed.
Caroline's is also one half of creative duo Cabinet of Curiosity, with Bartlett School of Architecture graduate Edmond Salter. Together they worked with The Samaritans on Willesden Green to create a window based upon "the idea of renewal and recycling using a poem by William Shakespeare 'The Phoenix and the Turtle', with a paper phoenix as a central motif." Explains Caroline, "We created a window display which reflected some of the origins of the nativity - as we opened on the 2nd day of Christmas - in addition to reflecting the history of Willesden and the nature of the site."
Look out for Caroline's work in 2012, as she has a slew of exciting projects ahead: from Thames Festival education project, 'Rivers of the World', (which we spoke to jotta member Chloe Bonfield about recently), to production design on actress Romola Garai's forthcoming short film 'Scrubber', to costume design for virtuoso cellist Li Lu. And if that wasn't enough, Collinge will be exhibiting her paper costumes at the Royal College of Art.
The full Advent window calendar will be on show this weekend with a series of festive workshops and activities, including Caroline's paper and origami workshop B a Bird. The installations will be up until January 2012, The Samaritans shop then plans to auction the Cabinet of Curiosity paper art to raise money for their charity.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

B. a Bird

A paper craft workshop for all ages and abilities introducing recycling, origami and paper cut techniques to make paper bird objects.

Where: The Samaritans, 11 Walm Lane
Date: Sunday 18th December, 1pm-3.30pm
Participation: 30-40 persons maximum at any one time

Sunday, 11 December 2011


Here are some further photographs of our project working with The Samaritans charity shop, Brent and the Architecture Foundation. The project used recycled objects and paper: books, origami, papier mache, collage and cut paper techniques to create objects. More pictures can be viewed on the website:

Tuesday, 6 December 2011


I've been working with an architect on a short commission for The Architecture Foundation to provide new windows on the high street at Willesden Green. I was very happy that we were partnered with The Samaritans charity shop at 11 Walm Lane. It's proved to be a very succesful collaboration and I have been able to incorporate paper recycling.

Here is an article about the project from The Evening Standard which mentions our commission:

Welcome to the high street that's been turned into an advent calendar

London is London and the city is buzzing. Despite everything the world and its bankers can throw at us, we continue to flourish and grow, and that counts especially for our multifaceted design industry. Willesden Green for instance - up to now, let's face it, plain and drab and boring - is hosting an exhilarating design project to revive and improve the High Road throughout December.The project, funded by the Outer London Fun Project with Brent council and The Architecture Foundation, in collaboration with Meanwhile Space and Blue Consulting, will see a flock of world-class designers transforming Willesden High Road and some of Walm Lane into a giant, urban advent calendar. Day by day from today until Christmas Day, 25 local shops and businesses will play host to the creations of wildly inventive design teams who will make each storefront into a life-sized advent window surprise.
The local shops participating in the project include the jewellers, barbers, a kebab shop, a pound shop, Caribbean snack supplies, a gift shop and the local hair stylist.
When the project was first dreamed up a month ago, submissions to contribute designs flooded in from all over the world, and the chosen design teams include architects, film set designers, product designers, fashion designers, cabinet makers, art directors, graphic designers and even a film-maker.
Many of the designers, such as Merel Karhof, Thorunn Arnadottir and Marcus Kayser, were raised in other countries but trained and base their practice here, because London is now the undisputed centre of the international design industry. A smaller number of the teams involved, such as Paper Collective, are based in Willesden itself.
"As a charity we're always keen on how the environment can be improved to help social engagement," says Sarah Ichioka, director of the Architecture Foundation, who came up with the idea for the project. "Advent calendars are all about unveiling and surprises. We really want to generate daily footfall and interest in the area by welcoming people to something exciting and festive."
The first Window on Willesden will be created by Kieren Jones, a designer, maker, researcher and self-styled professional amateur.
"The pilot 'Window' is a vacant juice bar. It will be the project HQ," says Jones. "You can call in, learn about the project, pick up the map and then take the trail to see the windows down the High Road. I'm doing a Las Vegas-style lighting display."
Monumental and fun, his window lights will illuminate passengers sitting waiting at the bus stop outside.
Next will come playwright Caroline Collinge and architect Edmond Salter, with their Cabinet of Curiosities, whose artworks will transform the window of the local charity shop on Walm Lane (leading into Willesden Green) tomorrow.
On Saturday comes Metropolitan Workshop in the Food for Thought café on Willesden High Road - and so it goes, from one festive day to the next.
The team will post pictures of the installations, by their official photographer Mike Massaro, on the website at willesdenwindows.com and there will be a focus weekend of special events on December 17 and 18, with designers taking hands-on craft workshops, local historical tours, and last, but by no means least, mince pies and mulled wine.

Saturday, 5 November 2011


Earlier this year myself and Edmond Salter worked with schools to produce art work for Rivers of the World. This was exhibited along the Thames River during the Thames festival and in the OXO gallery. We were very impressed with the pupil's work and their ability to follow a brief within a day and a half workshop. We're going to be working with more school's next year and are looking forward to exploring unusual art techniques and making work of an even higher quality with the schools.
The project can be viewed at: http://www.riversoftheworld.org/

Tuesday, 18 October 2011



I love watching Li Lu perform, even if I cannot be physically be there.Li Lu holds her presence even within still photos. I would love to include her within my current research programme at University of the Arts looking at Baroque forms of movement.

Photographs: Garth Williams 2011

Wednesday, 5 October 2011


I've recently started working with cellist Li Lu and glassmakers on an upcoming performance piece presenting the Bach cello suites as an audio visual live sculpture. At the moment the project is still at the development stage but I have designed a poster cover that will accompany the CD promoting the work.

Li Lu is performing a free concert Friday 7th October between 6-7pm within Rogue Artists Studios.
The studio space is also open Saturday 8th October 11-6pm and Sunday 9th October 12-5pm.


Work from the project and some of our previous work will be displayed within the studio space of glassmakers Sharon Campbell and Lauren Sagar.


Wednesday, 27 July 2011


Paper costume installation 'Through the Wardrobe' in the Faraway Forest at this year's Latitude festival.

It was interesting to see the work outside of its' usual context and see how people interacted with the pieces. I'm now thinking about creating an individual costume sculpture on a much larger scale which would create a greater sense of drama.

Thursday, 30 June 2011


Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Hidden Art

I’ve been working with an architect on proposals for commissions, the majority of which require visualisations of the final work or inspirations. These are never usually shown in my portfolio, where the focus is on completed projects.

1)This commission was selected for an outdoors installation, but due to limitations we encountered with the production company, we were left with 4 days in which to make 8 Victorian pieces. Sadly we also didn’t manage to get any photographs of the final installation and as the work was never returned to us, this is the only visual record of the piece.

2)A visualisation for Minnie Weisz Studioto: the potential for a billboard near the studio to be used for exhibiting artwork by graphic and typographic artists.
The billboard art commissions by Argent PLC are currently on display behind St Pancras station.

3)Victorian architecture formerly used for textiles and fashion production is used to host installations and art for an annual festival ‘Situation Critical’. This proposal is based upon a contemporary high fashion label local to the region, John Smedley and a missing crinoline from a portrait of his wife, Caroline, resonant of the loss of the textile and fashion from that region.

4)Temple Manor in Kent was a point of departure and return for the Knights Templar. Our proposal developed ideas for an installation themed around travel. This collage was a starting point for our inspirations.

Monday, 14 March 2011

East London Advertiser article: Fashion guru Betty Jackson displays her eco credentials in Bethnal Green

Alex Maule, 21, Imelda Maguire, 26, fashion designer Betty Jackson, Conny Seidler, 22 wearing a dress designed by Caroline Collinge from Cabinet of Curiosity.

AFTER Livia Firth made a splash at the Oscars with her ethical red carpet gown last week the east End jumped on the guilt-free bandwagon with an event at Bethnal Green’s Museum of Childhood. Fashion designer and V&A trustee Betty Jackson was among the host of eco-pioneers who crammed into the Cambridge Heath Road museum’s exhibition hall last Thursday evening for a feast of ethical fashion. Eco-journalists and green stylists were discussing the rise of “slow fashion”, which stands against the throw-away culture of buying often and cheap that has gained popularity in recent years, while the Guardian’s Ethical Living columnist Lucy Siegle, spoke about her forthcoming book, To Die For: Is Fashion Wearing out the World? London’s ultra-cool stylist Jocelyn Whipple ran a workshop on green styling and eco-campaigners Labour Behind the Label and Love Fashion Hate Sweat Shops offered top tips on how to be stylishly sustainable.
By Victoria Huntley, News Editor, East London Advertiser, Monday, March 7, 2011.

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Museum of Childhood Ethical Fashion Event

I've just shown some paper costumes at the Museum of Childhood for an ethical fashion event organised by The Papered Parlour. 
The skirt is made from stitched japanese paper, folded using a variation on the miura-ori fold, whilst the fan is a variation on the miura-ori fold, using cartridge paper that has also been stitched. 
I plan to make another costume with this folding technique but on a larger scale, using Tyvek instead of paper.
The photographs of dance performer Conny Seidler were taken by The Papered Parlour.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Origami Folding on a Monumental Scale

I spent the latter part of last year folding paper and during the research process have started to investigate increasing the scale of my work. These are pictures of one of my paper sculptures. It has been exhibited at Minnie Weisz Studio and is due to transfer to Birmingham in February, but I will have to increase the scale further for the new venue. The fold the sculpture is based on is a miura-ori fold. This was invented as a paper map fold in 1970 but has since been employed in designing airbags and satellites.