Design Trust Seed Grant

Indigenous Toys of the GPRD

The project aims to inspire interactions with the non-digital world and to create positive intra-generational community development through indigenous art forms.

Situated in Tai O, a traditional fishing village of the Pearl River Delta, the project works alongside the Tai O Cultural Association Limited (大澳文化協會), to document existing toy designs, and deliver workshops to pass on this widely forgotten art form.

The construction of objects such as the autumnal Rolling Can Lantern (罐頭嘜燈籠) provides a dynamic design exercise and play experience that articulates cultural belonging and traditional craft. For a society increasingly detached from meaningful engagement with crafting, this project enables people to understand the application and properties of a wide range of tools, materials and processes.

Methods of documentation include interviews, testimonials, images and video footage which will be analysed to create a concise design manual, serving as the first entry in a potentially vast library of undocumented indigenous engineering.

About Jasper Dowding

Jasper Dowding is a practicing artist, designer and craftsman, and has been living in Hong Kong since 2016.

Jasper is a renown for his handmade sculptural blown glass works and has exhibited and demonstrated his skills across Australia, North America, Europe and Asia. His works have been exhibited internationally, including exhibitions at the Victoria and Albert Museum and Saatchi Gallery in London.

Originally from Perth, Western Australia, he attended a specialised art school where he focused on painting, jewellery and photography, and completed his Bachelor of Art (Jewellery and 3D) with high distinction at Curtin University, Western Australia in 2004.