Phil J B Ratcliffe MSDC

Furniture & Boxes

About Phil
Phil Ratcliffe is an artist, designer maker and craftsman who directs a complete design service from conception and technical drawings to build and installation. Works range from interior design, shop fit and furniture, scenic carpentry, performance/art installations to exhibition design & build, prop making, cabinet making, art commissions/sculpture to final fix bespoke joinery and carpentry. Unique, one-off products that are innovative, both in function and form as well as being practical.
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Phil Barret Ratcliffe is a polymath whose work is rooted in the Arts & Crafts. His work spans many disciplines, material processes and applications; both traditional and contemporary. He is currently preparing a retrospective exhibition of his work for Oldham Art Gallery which will showcase the creative results of an inquisitive mind that has continually embraced new craft techniques and fused them with more traditional methods for nearly a quarter of century.

Digital disciplines and technologies such as 3D printing and scanning sit comfortably alongside extensive technical skills in traditional craft–making processes like fine furniture making and joinery, metalsmithing, stained glass work and printmaking.

Similarly, Ratcliffe’s inspirational influences range far and wide, encompassing Modernism, Art Nouveau, Antonio Gaudi, Phillipe Stark, Zen literature, wabi-sabi, the Japanese art of impermanence, social political literature, psychology & philosophy to name but a few.

It’s no surprise, either, that Ratcliffe’s workplaces spread out from his creative studio base where he crafts his commissions to education, via lecturing, and publishing, via books. And it would be wrong to assume that he, himself, has stopped learning and upskilling: experimental approaches to each of his craft areas are a given. Gesamtkunstwerk, or complete works of art encompassing a range of skills and material applications, sums up his modus operandi.

Resumé Back to top


  • MA Design/3D Crafts.
  • Level 3 Diploma Furniture Craft & Design.
  • ICA 2 Carpentry & Joinery.
  • C&G Handcrafted Furniture.
  • NVQ level 3 Teacher Training.
  • BA Hons Degree Interior Architecture.
  • HND Exhibition/Spatial Design.
  • ND 3D Design/Display.


  • MMU (Manchester Metropolitan University) - Giant logo light sculpture display.
  • National Trust: Design, build & installation of museum collections multi-use mobile display counter.
  • Manchester Museum: Design & build commission of ash furniture pieces for public galleries. 600x400x1300mm, solid ash with ash veneered MDF. Ebony stain finish, mortice & tennon jointed.
  • Millgate Arts Centre: Interlocking reception counter 900x600x2000mm: Design & build commission. Walnut veneer. MDF acrylic finish. Formica. Stainless /brushed steel.
  • Millgate Arts Centre: Wall reliefs 3500x800mm: Design build & installation commission. Decorative wall reliefs situated either side of the auditorium. Solid oak & oak veneered MDF acrylic finish. Acoustic fabric. Formica. Dalsouple. MDF with acrylic finish.
  • MMU: Lectern, Bridgewater Hall. 350x500x300mm: Design & build commission. Two mechanised (floor standing & table top) lecterns (Adjustable book rests). Solid & veneered maple & decoflex bendable veneer. Steel adjustable mechanisms powder coated. Laser engraved motifs with acrylic infill. Clear Lacquer finish.
  • Sheriff of Hull Chains of Office Boxes, 200x200x100mm: Design & make commission for Hull Council/Oresome Jewellery. Lockable presentation boxes: Solid & veneered maple and oak bird's eye veneer + decorative tulip wood edge band inlay, birch ply substrate box lid top. Removable velvet cushioned interiors. Bespoke hinges and locks (Armac Martin).
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