Upcoming talk

Talking about recent works at the JMGA monthly meeting in WA

this picture is just me showing off. it gets worse…

Next Tuesday, the 24th of September, I’m going to be talking to some of y’all at the JMGA WA monthly meeting. If you’re not across it but you’re in the WA area (visitors welcome, just let me know and I’ll look out for you) you’re hereby invited to come hear and see what I’ve been up to over the last couple of years, jewel-wise.

It’s on at 7:30 pm@ WA Lapidary and Rock-hunting Club 
31/35 Gladstone Road, Rivervale WA 6103 

As for the photo, this was taken by Helen Aitken-Kuhnen (*clang* first name drop) at last weekend’s masterclass with these legends of jewellery in Australia. For the finished product of David Walker’s endeavours (as you might expect, he put us all to shame with his work ethic and the quality of his output), and to hear me spill the tea about another jewellery-legend that I lunched with this week (*hint* he’s over from Europe [just…] and been at #RadPav and The Jam in the last week) you’d better get in on time to claim a seat.

In all honesty, I could fill my time just talking about the last two weeks. BTW, doe anyone know how much time I have??

Marfa, TX

Opening tomorrow night!

Please join us this Friday to meet Melissa Cameron and view her solo exhibition opening of Marfa, TX. 

Opening Friday 13 September August 6pm – 8pm

Exhibition dates 11 September – 13 October 2019.

I’ll be in the gallery for a bit today and tomorrow if you want to come say hi and have a guided preview 😉

Toowoomba Contemporary Wearables

… and we celebrated with?

Image of corporate entity / corporeal entity in stainless steel, vitreous enamel and titanium. Photograph by Melissa Cameron.
Image of corporate entity / corporeal entity in stainless steel, vitreous enamel and titanium. Photograph by Melissa Cameron.

Thank you to Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery for the Contemporary Weatables ‘19 award. I got the call yesterday while showing my family all the work I’ve just finished making for Marfa, TX. My niece, 4 years old, told me very sternly that what she was seeing was not jewellery.

“What is jewellery then?” I asked?

“Jewellery is hearts.”


Sorry to disappoint! The acquired piece is a double-header – yes, one side is my red head 👩🏻‍🦰 – which is at least anatomy.

corporate entity / corporeal entity


A double-sided neckpiece with pixelated images on opposing sides, depicting; the US Federal Reserve building, and, my face as photographed for my last US visa. Decoded from ASCII/Binary, the Fed reads “corporate entity”, my face, “corporeal entity”. The Fed background reads “not-me, not-you, not-them, not-us.”, while the opposing background “I-you-him/her/them-we-you(pl)-they”.

In the US and Australia, and other countries I checked, maximizing employment is at the core of government monetary policy (in these cases, the three written rules supposed to dictate how governments will benefit their citizens). The difference between the US Federal Reserve and the Reserve Bank of Australia is “the economic prosperity and welfare of the people of Australia”, is the third of three government-mandated duties. In the US, the third objective of the Fed is moderating interest rates.

Thank you again to Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery for your long-term commitment to this artform, and to Sue Lostroh for your call, it was a highlight of a very proud day 🙂

See the exhibition at Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery until November 3.

Invitation to Marfa, TX

My new solo exhibition at Bilk Gallery in Canberra

Please join us and meet Melissa Cameron for her solo exhibition opening of Marfa, TX. 

My past is a foreign country. We do things differently t/here.

In 2017 I went on vacation to Marfa, TX, with Bruce and Elaine. A town put on the map as a railroad water stop, it’s three hours drive from El Paso and one hour from the Rio Grande. In the last century ranchers, rangers, POW’s, and refugees have all passed through. Since the 1970’s it’s been a permanent home to the works of artist/designer Donald Judd. Since his death these installations, and his preserved studios, have drawn visitors from all over the globe. 

Marfa is in the Chihuahuan desert; there, dropped steel has a long life on the ground. Seeing steel, and knowing I could geotag what I picked up using my phone’s camera, I started a solo scavenger hunt. It covered a campsite; a former US military base (now a part of the Chinati Foundation); the grounds of hotels, diners, galleries and museums; and the dusty streets and sidewalks of the town.

My time/space capsule of finds moved continent with me in 2018-2019. It was finally reopened in Perth. I printed the photos, matched and mapped the finds, researched, and drew. I used this data, and the found objects, to make jewellery.

Since childhood I have picked up bits of metal from the ground. In Marfa, recording and collecting felt instinctive, inevitable. In Perth, I struggled to understand my compulsion at that time and in that place. I had to be with the collection and contextualize it, almost archeologically, in order to reimagine it. 

Some finds have been altered significantly. Others minimally. All have travelled far. As have I.

Melissa Cameron

August 2019
 

Opening Friday 13 September August 6pm – 8pm

Exhibition dates 11 September – 13 October 2019.

12 Palmerston Lane, Manuka, ACT 2603   Phone +61 (0) 2 61622761  

Hours Wed-Fri 11-5  Sat 11-4

*images on the Bilk site by Melissa Cameron, Elaine Cheung and Bruce Cooper

Master Makers and Toowoomba Contemporary Wearables open SOON!

East Coast of Australia exhibitions is where it’s at this week, and next.

I have works in two exhibitions starting Thursday and Friday of this week.

If you’re in Melbourne have a great time at #RadPav, I’ll see you at the next one for sure. If you’re in Toowoomba this is my first Contemporary Wearables for a few years (you have to be in Australia to apply). It’s great to be back!

MasterMakers has an invite-only opening on Thursday, with guest speaker Virginia Trioli (!)

Contemporary Wearables ’19 is open to all by RSVP, details on the invitation below. National treasure (and my mentor) Marian Hosking will be at the opening as the judge of the awards. If only I weren’t headed to Canberra the next day. I know the collection of jewellery there is very impressive, I hope to get to see it one day.

MasterMakers at RMIT Gallery:

RMIT Gallery, Building 16, 344 Swanston Street, Melbourne.

Since the 1970s, leading Australian and international Gold and Silversmithing artists have delivered and participated in masterclasses in the RMIT School of Art which has had a profound impact on the training of the craft in Australia.

This major exhibition explores the masterclass legacy, showcasing both recent works of the visiting ‘master makers’ and work produced at the master classes, as well as recording the cultural, artistic and technical shift in contemporary jewellery and object. 

Curator Mark Edgoose

Featuring artists: Ruby Aitchison, Helen Aitken-Kuhnen, Robert Baines, Nicholas Bastin, Peter Bauhuis, Dianne Beevers, Doris Betz, Renee Bevan, David Bielander, Julie Blyfield, Zoe Brand, Helen Britton, Sue Buchanan, Melissa Cameron, Bifei Cao, Pamela Chan, Yu Fang Chi, David Clarke, Anna Clynes, Katie Collins, Conversation Piece (Beatrice Brovia & Nicholas Cheng), Anna Davern, Helen Dilkes, Bin Dixon-Ward, Joungmee Do, Mark Edgoose, Sian Edwards, Ian Ferguson, Karl Fritsch, Emi Fukuda, Eli Giannini, Kiko Gianocca, Allona Goren, Rowena Gough, Wayne Guest, Caz Guiney, Marcos Guzman, Mary Hackett, Kirsten Haydon, Peter Hoogeboom, Marian Hosking, Katherine Hubble, Linda Hughes, David Huycke, Naoko Inuzuka, Kazuhiro Itoh, Nicole Jacquard, Tassia Joannides, Cara Johnson, Hermann Jünger, Jiro Kamata, Jung-Hoo Kim, Inari Kiuru, Wendy Korol, Daniel Kruger, Otto Künzli, Andrew Last, Benjamin Lignel, Sue Lorraine, Carlier Makigawa, Stefano Marchetti, Marion Marshall, Chris Massey, Claire McArdle, Kelly McDonald, Lindy McSwan, Sam Mertens, Karl Millard, Yutaka Minegishi, Marc Monzó, Shelley Norton, Michaela Pegum, Jana Roman, Lucy Sarneel, Elise Sheehan, Debbie Sheezel, Bettina Speckner, Michelle Stewart, Leah Teschendorff, Elizabeth Turrell, Renée Ugazio, Manon van Kouswijk, Michael Wong and Aurelia Yeomans.

Contemporary Wearables ’19

531 Ruthven St, Toowoomba.

We are honoured to have one of Australia’s most respected metalsmiths,  Marian Hosking, selecting this year’s Award Prize winners and making suggestions for collection acquisitions.

The selection panel this year was Simon Cottrell, Lecturer / Researcher, Gold and Silversmithing Workshop, ANU School of Art & Design, Claire Sourgnes CEO Artisan, and Chloë Powell Curator and Exhibitions Manager, Craft Victoria / Co-founder and Director, Radiant Pavilion: Melbourne Contemporary Jewellery and Object Biennial. The Gallery team is very grateful to them for their valuable contribution in selecting the exhibition.

Exhibition – Marfa, TX

5807: 30,18.2138N, 104,1.3102W

I’ll post the invitation to the opening as soon as I have it, but in the mean time, there’s a few preview photos for my upcoming exhibition, entitled Marfa, TX, going up about the place. First up there’s Garland, and check Bilk’s website for the latest sneak peek.

And for those of you in the vicinity of Canberra, come see me at the opening on Friday the 13th. Bilk is helping me to transform the space just a little for the show so there’ll be a lot to see, beyond the 30+ works in found steel, enamel and, (wait for it) gold!

And if you check Instagram today you can see a work in progress in the videos. Not to mention the months of previous progress shots…

Marfa, TX

mapping the places I picked up bits of discarded steel in Texas

In 2017 I went on vacation to Marfa, TX, with Bruce and Elaine. It’s in the Chihuahuan desert; there, dropped steel has a long life on the ground. Seeing steel, and knowing I could geotag what I picked up using my phone’s camera, I started a solo scavenger hunt. It covered a campsite; a former US military base (now a part of the Chinati Foundation); the grounds of hotels, diners, galleries and museums; and the dusty streets and sidewalks of the town.

This map shows what I found where, and when.

click on a point to see the find in that location

Melbourne and Perth and Sydney – events to get y’all out of the studio

Short films and a performance; crafting experience as well as the object

Last Friday night I went to the Real to Reel Craft Film Festival here in Perth and it was incredible! Presented by local craft heroes Maker & Smith (organisers of workshops, talks and other beautifully thought-out and executed events) it is screening again this Friday night in Perth at Camelot Cinema. The fest is then touring to Melbourne – end of this month – and Sydney – early next – so check out that first link for dates. I love a short film fest, and this was one for the ages.

Also in Melbourne you have the Su san Cohn performance Meaninglessness in the middle of this month. Please go, it looks to be another powerful presentation from one of Australia’s finest jewellery thinkers. I look forward to living vicariously.

Master Class Workshop – Liquid Enamel for Steel and Copper with visiting artist Melissa Cameron.

fuckthispresidentandtheregimeherodeinon 2017. Stainless steel, titanium, vitreous enamel

14 – 15 September 2019

In her practice Melissa Cameron has perfected the application of liquid enamel onto small objects. It’s a unique enamelling method, well suited to both flat and dimensional forms, with coating found objects like wire and tiny laser-cut parts being Melissa’s specialties.

In this workshop with the artist, learn her tips and tricks for using liquid enamel on steel and copper, from metal surface preparation to enamel mixing, application, and firing. Extend your decorative palette with textures and patterns using simple techniques, well suited for use on items of jewellery and small objects.

This masterclass is being held in conjunction with Melissa Cameron’s solo exhibition at Bilk Gallery opening on Friday the 13 September 2019, 6pm – 8pm.

Workshop details
Time: 9.30 am – 5pm, Saturday and Sunday 14 – 15 September.
Location: Workshop Bilk, 403 Captians Flat Road Carwoola Queanbeyan NSW Australia. Attendees will need to bring their own lunch. Coffee and tea will be provided.
Materials: All materials and tools will be supplied.
Cost: $450 per person for the two days. Maximum of six places available.

The Neck

an exhibition of works with a message made to dangle from the neck

The Neck is an exhibition of neckpieces curated by Bridget Kennedy which will be going on show at Bridget Kennedy Contemporary Jewellery and Object Gallery from Thursday July 4th, with opening drinks from 6-8pm. See it at 53 Ridge St North Sydney, Wed to Sat 11 – 5pm until 27th of July.

The neck, often seen as a sensual part of the body, a site of vulnerability, is also a site of strength, supporting the heavy head, a conduit to our heart and lungs, providing life giving oxygen to our bodies, and nourishment through the ingestion of food. At a time when our planet and humanity seems to be suffocating on many fronts, strangled by powerful, self serving ‘leaders’, Bridget Kennedy invites selected artists to explore the neck as a vehicle for political, social and environmental activation. Artists include; Melissa Cameron, Melinda Young, Liane Rossler, Pennie Jagiello, Claire McArdle, Peter Deckers, Nicole Robins, Misa Gelin, Shirley Cho, Cara Johnson, Zoe Brand, Kelly McDonald, Vivian Atkinson, Tracey Clement, Vernon Bowden, Renee Pearson, Helena Bogucki, Roseanne Bartley.

10% of artist profits will be donateed to Pacific Calling Partnership (PCP) . The exhibition will be opened by Corinne Fisher, Coordinator of the Pacific Calling Partnership (PCP) initiative at the Edmund Rice Centre for Justice and Community Education.

My contribution was originally seen in the IMAGINE exhibition, curated by Boris Bally, which toured the US for a couple of years. It’s the first time it is being seen in Australia, and consequently it’s the first time I’ve posted a gun inside Australia. Fingers crossed it makes it…