It was the most stunning Spring day when I took a drive into the countryside to Castlemaine, to see the latest episode of the important Buda prize: the ‘2015 Contemporary Australian Silver & Metalwork Award‘ at the Castlemaine Art Gallery.
Awards (see gallery page for beautiful photographs):
- (professional) The Leviny Commemorative award: Daehoon Kang … this is an amazing vessel, with the most stunning counter-balancing design and gorgeous surface treatment
- (professional) Arts Centre Melbourne Silver award: Janine Tanzer … the shape and decorative elements harking back to the height of the roaring 20s
- (professional) The Australian Decorative and Fine Art Societies Emerging artist award: Maureen Faye-Chauhan … strongly geometric pieces (as per her recent exhibition)
- (professional) The Australian Decorative and fine Art Society of Yarra Anniversary award: Joungmee Do … the most exceptional, outrageous, jubilant object (below image)
- (student / recent graduates) e.g.etal Design & Development award: Yu Fang Chi … incredibly delicate, almost like fairy-floss
- (student / recent graduates) A & E Metals award: Larah Nott … her smithing pieces won her this award, though I especially liked the precision of her neckpiece
- (student / recent graduates) Gold & Silversmithing Guild of Australia award: Kimba Pham … proving that scale isn’t necessary to show exceptional design and handskills
This gallery is a much more deserving place for this exhibition … the previous venue in Bendigo wasn’t quite right (though should have received many visitors), and Buda (though a lovely home) was almost not quite grand enough. It’s pleasing for these objects to be positioned in an art gallery, in a room adjacent to a colonial collection. Perhaps it’s the traditionalist in me, but I think this space elevates the pieces, and hopefully it does this for visitors (particularly those who’ve not come to the gallery especially to see this exhibition).
Of course I particularly like to see the larger scale smithing objects in this exhibition – for me the first vitrine was wonderful (first image above). There are not as many shows for this oeuvre as there is for jewellery, so it’s a joy to see them playing with each other. Most especially I was pleased to see less highly polished surfaces this year, and perhaps more diversity of materials.
‘2015 Contemporary Australian Silver & Metalwork Award‘ is at Castlemaine Art Gallery until 18th October 2015.
- 25Jul13: ‘Buda Contemporary Australian Silver & Metalwork Award 2013‘
- 09Jun09: ‘Contemporary Australian Silver & Metalwork’ @ BUDA
Check out the article in The Age too : ‘Craft review: Contemporary Australian silver and metalwork dazzles‘ … the author makes an interesting point about six of the seven award winners being women.
More photographs below (not published above to save load times):