Kirsten Haydon ‘Ice storeroom’ @ Craft

25 07 2014

Kirsten was one of my two enameling teachers at RMIT. And for that I will be forever grateful – I love the practice, though of course haven’t done any for many years now. Not like Kirsten – she continues to explore the technique and her connection with the Antarctic in Ice storeroom‘ at Craft.

installation; photograph taken with gallery permission

installation; photograph taken with gallery permission

The installation is wonderful. I like how it transports you to another space – moving through the structure it encloses you and it genuinely feels like you’re quite separate from the gallery. It evokes a sparsely built storeroom.

The brooches are mostly circular (though with differing diameters), and seem to me to refer to ice cores.

Exhibition media: “The ice has a remarkable quality of preserving and storing knowledge within its structure. Inclusions, both micro and macro, in the ice can provide detail about the moment the ice was formed. This knowledge could be accessed from analysing the trapped gases or dust particles or by connecting with the narrative of an enclosed man-made object.
In this installation Ice storeroom builds on Haydon’s previous work with Antarctica and explores the notion that Antarctica is a repository for environmental and cultural knowledge.

photograph taken with gallery permission

photograph taken with gallery permission

There is more colour in this show than in her previous; with the additional hues within a limited palette of greys and blues and rusts, with a shot of dark grey / black in the bracelet in the foreground above.

Once again I like the neckpieces made of tube-components; and I loved the little objects and the neckpiece ‘ice monitor‘.

I initially thought that many of the pieces could be considered to be quite similar to previous collections (certainly not meant as a criticism but more an observation). However then I realised that newer pieces in this exhibition are accompanied with a smattering of older pieces (from 2006 and since), which may explain my sense of familiarity. I may also be experiencing ignorance or failing memory – I’m absolutely sure that were all the work to be in one room a progression would be completely obvious; and can you imagine how gorgeous that room would be!

That said, some of the neckpieces here show incredibly interesting development of form and construction (as in the ‘Lure of Radium‘ below).

I’d also like to know more about the installation on the back wall; for it is unique in the exhibition in including porcelain in the materials – though I couldn’t quite tell where…

media image; click on image for original source

media image in SMH article; click on image for original source

This exhibition has also been reviewed and written about by:

  • SMH: with a beautiful photograph and well-researched and thoughtful commentary
  • HandMadeLife: with many stunning photographs (including one of ‘ice monitor‘; my favourite statement “Every time we’ve seen her work there has been a level of finesse that makes the ideas feel as complete as the actual work. That accuracy of thinking and of execution is evident in every object, every surface, every well-considered corner of this installation.”
  • BlouIn ArtInfo

And make sure you check out the Craft interview with Kirsten here.

Kirsten Haydon ‘Ice storeroom‘ is at Craft until 26th July 2014.
[Sorry sorry - it closes tomorrow - I've had some trouble getting to this one.]

See also: 10th June 2011 Kirsten Haydon ‘ice structure‘ @ Gallery Funkai





‘Fresh!’ @ Craft

17 05 2014

Fresh!‘ : the annual Craft showcase of selected graduate works returns.

This is the 2013 cohort, with the exhibition no longer at the end of the year but a few months later (no doubt to give the curator and students more time).

exhibition ; photograph with permission

exhibition ; photograph with permission

It was a delight to visit.

There is an assuredness in many of these pieces that bodes exceptionally well for their future as makers.

Kate Jones ; photograph with permission

Kate Jones ; photograph with permission

Exhibiting artists are:

  • Ruby Aitchison – gold & silversmithing
  • John Brooks – drawing
  • Grace Crawshaw-McLean [blog] – beautifully delicate and ephemeral weaving (so subtle I almost missed them)
  • Saskia Doherty [website]
  • Annie Gobel [website] – gold & silversmithing; bold neckpieces
  • Marcos Guzman [Kit & Caboodle profile] – gold & silversmithing (photograph below)
  • Kate Jones [tumblr] – ceramics; stunning large-scale objects (photograph above); my favourite group of the whole show
  • Tracey Lamb – visual art
  • Alexander Maklary [website] – ceramics
  • Louise Meuwissen [blog] – painting
  • Elise Sheehan [tumblr] – gold & silversmithing; close-running second favourite (photograph below)
  • Kate Wischusen [website] – gold & silversmithing; I’ve loved Kate’s work before, especially her ‘Montparnasse‘ enamel brooches
Elise Sheehan; photograph taken with permission

Elise Sheehan; photograph taken with permission

Marcos Guzman; photograph taken with permission

Marcos Guzman Ruby Aitchison; photograph taken with permission

Fresh!‘ is at Craft until 1st June 2014.

‘Fresh! 2012′ : oh, I must have missed this exhibition

Fresh! 2011

Fresh! 2010‘ :

Fresh! 2009‘ :

Updated (18th May): the ladies at HML love this exhibition too, and I especially want to quote their statement that “Fresh remains and important exhibition that acts as both celebration and forecast” (hallelujah!).





‘Supermarket’ @ Craft

11 12 2013

The Supermarket‘ event/exhibition at Craft exercised my mind, and days later it still is.

Questions of mass-production versus hand-production versus limited-production, and the influence on value perception, play on my little grey cells.

installation

installation

Exhibition media: “Exploring the phenomenon of markets and production ware, Supermarket transforms the gallery into a marketplace of limited edition works exclusive to Craft from a select group of Melbourne makers and designers.
Curated by Debbie Pryor a selection of artists have been invited to create exclusive ranges as an extension of products in the retail store or reinvention of exhibition concepts.

Participating artists are:

installation of Anna Davern + Lucy James

installation of Anna Davern + Lucy James

There are so many pieces from each maker here, that it represents quite a significant investment in time – above and beyond any ‘regular’ exhibition or even any level of stocking a retail space.

Naturally the individual works are super (especially the Lucy James prints), though somehow I kept wanting to view it as an ‘exhibition’ … and in that way I’m not entirely sure it all genuinely works, but then again (given the concept) I expect it isn’t meant to.

That said, I imagine that the market day (this Saturday 14th) will be the time when it truly shines. And as one can purchase and take-away immediately, it should be great for gift-giving … but let’s hope some of the works remain for the special day!

Strange that I feel the need to make the distinction between ‘exhibition’ vs ‘market’ so clear … something to think more about, and perhaps that is the whole point of ‘Supermarket‘. Or maybe I’m just thinking too much.

Check out the ladies of HandMadeLife’s post about it: they describe it as a “concept driven, exhibition meets retail event hybrid” … this totally nails it.

The Craft facebook page has many gorgeous photographs.

Supermarket‘ is at Craft until 24th December 2013.





Two questions

17 11 2013

Please tell me if you know the answers:

1. unless I’m suffering from online-blindness, I cannot find any media for ‘Fresh!‘ this year (the annual survey of graduate work that has been at Craft for many years; I couldn’t make last year, but these are the stories for 2011, 2010, 2009) … is it not happening?

2. again, perhaps I’m not using the right search terms, but I cannot find any listing for an exhibition of RMIT 1st and 2nd year Gold & Silversmithing students (other years’ stories 2011, 2010, 2009) … is it not happening?

—-

Update (21st November): please see the comments (from the most excellent Katie Jayne Britchford) for the full answers, but in short:
1. yes it will be happening early in the new year
2. no, it’s not happening

—-





‘Signature Style’ @ Craft

28 04 2013

The flu has had me in its grip for so long now that I nearly missed ‘Signature Style‘ at Craft, only catching it on the last day.

exhibition media

exhibition media

Exhibition media: “Signature Style is a major group exhibition exploring models of collaborative practice in contemporary jewellery. Featuring the work of some of Melbourne’s most exciting artists and jewellery practitioners Signature Style will be a significant addition to the emerging discourse around collaboration and contemporary craft. Collaboration poses a very different method of working – by its very nature, collaboration eschews individual artistic identity in favour of some kind of ‘third’ position. Signature Style will examine new methodologies of working and ‘work’, thinking through the potentials of collaboration within craft and design.

Meredith Turnbull & Manon van Kouwijk

Meredith Turnbull & Manon van Kouwijk

The combination of pieces by Meredith Turnbull and Manon van Kouswijk is stunning; their display gorgeous and sympathetic. I noticed though that their collaboration was more a conversation, as there didn’t seem to be any pieces with both of their names against them. This differed from other artists collaborations, as most of these were attributed to both artists.

installation; Katherine Wheeler & Polly van der Glas

installation; Katherine Wheeler & Polly van der Glas

I also loved the work by Katherine Wheeler and Polly van der Glas. Even though hair and teeth are not really my thing, and the fingers freaked me out initially, it must be said that their materials seemed well-matched. Katherine has written on her blog about the collaboration, with some lovely images; I especially enjoyed reading that: “We have both found the most successful pieces within our installation are the ones that have been made together- and taken on the 3rd entity through the collaborative process- not entirely either artist’s signature style, but a successful merge of the two.

Tessa Blazey & Alexi Freeman

Tessa Blazey & Alexi Freeman

Thirdly, the dress by Tessa Blazey and Alexi Freeman is arresting. The shadow it creates on the wall is too beautiful.

Participating artists are:

  • Nicholas Bastin [site] & Matthew Dux
  • Dan Bell, Bianca Hester, Charlie Sofo, Nathan Gray, Christopher LG Hill, Liang Luscombe & Oliver van der Lugt
  • Tessa Blazey [site] & Alexi Freeman [site]
  • Michaela Bruton & Kane Ikin [site]
  • Milly Flemming [site] & Dani Maugeri [site]
  • Natalia Milosz-Piekarska [site] & Katherine Doube
  • Nina Oikawa & Bridget Bodenham [site]
  • Meredith Turnbull & Manon van Kouswijk
  • Karla Way [site] & Dylan Martorell [site]
  • Katherine Wheeler [site] & Polly van der Glas [site]
installation

installation

Karla Way has written about her work on her blog too, and has some amazing images of her incredible work with Dylan; while I found the sheer number of objects to look at a little overwhelming, my friend loved LOVED it [see her blog post here].

Natalia Milosz-Piekarska has also written about her work on her blog too. Her body piece is incredibly beautiful and the video shown alongside it, worn by dancer Katherine Doube is mesmerising.
Update (30th April): also see VettiLiveinNorthcote’s post for some lovely images of the installation.

Bridget Bodenham has also shared an image of her work with Nina.

Signature Style‘ was at Craft 8th March – 27th April 2013.





Phoebe Porter ‘Unfold’ @ Craft

30 10 2012

More magic at Craft (formerly Craft Victoria): Phoebe Porter‘s ‘Unfold‘.

I absolutely loved this collection – their arrangement, their stark minimal contrast to the magnificent colour explosion in the adjacent rooms, their fineness, order and formality.

photograph taken with gallery permission

The inclusion of the making video and two large pieces of working equipment made it an informative visit too (especially fabulous for non-makers; giving a context that isn’t often seen).

Exhibition media: “The title Unfold has a dual meaning that alludes to both Porter’s technique of folding sheet metal to create jewellery pieces and her attempt to reveal the making process to the audience. Connections and joins in the pieces are clearly expressed, highlighting the methods of construction used in each design. Porter’s making process is revealed to the audience by this expression of construction within the pieces themselves as well as through the inclusion of video documentation in the exhibition alongside the finished works.

photograph taken with gallery permission

I was tempted to take one home with me (well, when the exhibition is over of course!) … I’m still considering it …

Phoebe Porter ‘Unfold‘ is at Craft until 1st December 2012.