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Marta Velasco Velasco

MA work

Pulau Banda

Nutmeg was once considered the “Holy Grail of Spices”; worth its weight in gold, it was a symbol of luxury and prestige. Until the 19th-century, the world’s only source of nutmeg was the Banda Islands —a tiny archipelago in today’s Indonesia— imagined by Europeans as a luxuriant tropical Eden. In the 17th-century the Dutch controlled all the islands except one, Run, an islet claimed by the English. In their urge to keep the nutmeg monopoly, the Dutch agreed to cede Manhattan (back then called New Amsterdam) to the English in return for Run. After this hype, the spice started loosing its value and Banda got forgotten. ‘Pulau Banda’ is a collection of textiles and wall hangs inspired by this story and influenced by contemporary Indonesia. It plays with fact, fiction and storytelling to represent that world. The work integrates silk, bamboo and recycled plastic to comment on changes of material value while transporting us to the islands.


  • MA Degree


    School of Design


    MA Textiles, 2017



  • Marta Velasco Velasco is a designer and artist driven by narrative and materiality, working within the fields of art direction, set design and textile design. 

    Her works are explorations into cultural traditions, colonial history and postcolonial traces. Looking at the tension between the object and the narrative intent, her work uses textiles as communication artifacts. Informed by broad research into her subjects, she plays with fact, fiction and storytelling to create new ways of representing fascinating stories.

    She is currently studying at Royal College of Art having graduated from Central Saint Martins in BA Textiles.
  • Degrees

  • BA Textiles, Central Saint Martins, 2014; BA Design, Elisava Barcelona School of Design and Engineering, 2010
  • Exhibitions

  • Work-In-Progress-Show, Royal College of Art, London 2017; Between Senses, Gallery House, New York City 2016; Talent!, Governors Island, New York City 2016; Sonar +D, Sonar Festival, Barcelona 2016; Yami-Ichi by Arebyte Gallery, OFF PRINT at Tate Modern, London 2016; Real Dirty Blue, Lethaby Gallery, London 2016; Reimagining Objects: A History of Design Exhibition, Hockney Gallery, London 2016; Work-In-Progress-Show, Royal College of Art, London 2016; Restless Futures, Lethaby Gallery (London Design Festival), London 2014