Joondalup Art Gallery showcasing jewellery as a craft in March 2019
Happy New Year!
My studio is finally back on line after a 5-month hiatus, during which time Bruce and I have moved country, sold a house in the USA, bought a house in Australia, made some minor renovations to the place and celebrated the closing of a year and the beginning of a new one. I did not stop working entirely but I did take advantage of the studio down-time to slow down a bit. The year proceeding the move was intense, but it was planned that way knowing that there would be some down-time immediately after our US exit, which in the end worked great. It has taken a month since the unpacking began to get my office and studio back in working order, and while I have a few tweaks left to do for full functionality in the studio (anyone have a drill press or air compressor going cheap?) the non-studio work on upcoming exhibitions and other events never really ceased. Which brings me to the latest news:
The Adorn exhibition and Driven to Adorn forum
The Jewellers and Metalsmiths Group of Australia – Western Australian (JMGAWA) branch is hosting a member exhibition at the City of Joondalup Art Gallery from 18 March-12 April 2019, and local craft thinker Carola Akindele-Obe of Maker and Smith is presenting a day of conversation with well-known local makers to coincide with the show on 24 March. And if that’s not enough, local legends Sarah Elson and Claire Townend will be teaching one-day classes of their respective specialties the following weekend; cuttlebone casting and enameling. I learned how to cast with Sarah in high school – in an uncharacteristic display I believe I drew and made a butterfly (in a surprise twist I was not actually influenced by Sarah’s superb Moth series as I believe they came later) – while Claire was my teacher when I went back to Curtin to dabble in jewellery in 2005. I’d not be where I am today without these two engaging instructors who are also thoughtful makers.
The Driven to Adorn conversation on March 24th will feature Katherine Kalaf, who in her Cottesloe gallery played host to significant international artist including – very memorably – the recent Loewe Prize shortlisted artist Giovanni Corvaja. Katherine’s space and the makers she attracted were an inspiration to me in my early career, and she was one of my first stockists. After Katherine’s presentation the Driven to Adorn forum will move into a 6×6 presentation, in which I will be one of the six local makers to present six minutes on an aspect of their practice. The full listing of ‘sixers’ for the afternoon is:
2-5pm 24 Mar 2019 (Includes afternoon tea and an invitation to a viewing of the Adorn exhibition after the forum)
Joondalup Reception Centre, Boas Avenue, Joondalup
Places are limited to 30 and there are 16 spots left (as of 15.2.19)
For those of you in Sydney head to Bridget Kennedy Project Space TONIGHT! for her year-end celebrations, and you can bag yourself a very rare ‘73’ pendant. They’re also available at Bilk in Canberra (and they have a few new pieces from me in their current ‘White Christmas’ show which opened last Saturday), at Bini in Melbourne and at Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh.
The pendants commemorate the 73 lives lost to gun violence in the USA on 1.1.2017.
Checking the date stamps will tell you that this post has been a month in the making, so thankfully I do have something pretty special to share for the elapsed time. Last week we had an offer accepted on a new house – 6 weeks to the day after arriving in Perth. It settles in January, so then we’ll finally be able to unpack our shipping container (which is now in storage) and I’ll be able to set up my studio and get back to work in earnest. In the mean time I’ve been compelled and coerced into a couple of seasonal shows.
For my fellow West-Australians, I’m going to be at two exhibition openings/Christmas parties on the 7th of December, where I’ll be showcasing some enamel works that I brought back to the country with me. For my fellow Perthlings and the nearby Freo dwellers, this is the first time that my works have been on display west-side since 2014. Catch you early at:
Galvanise Artsource Member Exhibition
Opening 6pm – 8pm and running until January 5.
Old Customs House
8 Phillimore Street, Fremantle WA 6160, Australia
Open 10am – 4pm daily, excepting December 24-28, (these dates inclusive)
Select wonderful Christmas* gifts of hand-made jewellery by ContemporaryMetal practitioners and W.A. contemporary jewellers.
6pm-8:30pm, December 7th – one night only!
Unit 6 · 77-79 Howe Street
Osborne Park, WA 6019
In the first exhibition see some enamel pieces that have never been sighted on this side of the country, and in the Contemporary Metal show, some pieces never before seen on these shores.
(*why do Aussies, and I’d probably add Brits in there too, use Christmas as the all-encompassing seasonal word, often notwithstanding their own religious denomination, while the US and Canada say Holiday/s? All answers accepted. [Including – you’re clearly white trash, Melissa, we don’t use that Christian word here.])
My Pittsburgh friends, my heart goes out to you. And to everyone in the USA who is continually subjected to these traumas.
Today I was just going to share the articles from Contemporary Craft’s (CC’s) latest email circular about the Transformations exhibition. But there’s another mass shooting to address first, in Squirrel Hill, just a few neighbourhoods across from The Strip District where CC is currently located. In the reporting I read, the shooter “used three Glock 357 handguns and an AR-15 assault rifle” to murder 11 people and injure four police officers.
The victims are:
“Joyce Fienberg, 75; Richard Gottfried, 65, Rose Mallinger, 97; Jerry Rabinowitz, 66; Cecil Rosenthal, 59, and his brother David Rosenthal, 54; married couple Bernice Simon, 84, and Sylvan Simon, 86; Daniel Stein, 71; Melvin Wax, 88; and Irving Younger, 69.”
America, I know you know this, but your right to bear arms comes with the implicit flip-side; an expectation that you, your friend, your lover, your child….
Continuing the tour of this important anti-gun-violence exhibition
The Boris Bally coordinated exhibition IMAGINE Peace Now has continued to gain relevance as it has toured the USA. It now makes its home at Radius Gallery in Santa Cruz, where Ann Hazels, the director, has made the bold move of showing it in time for the midterm elections in the USA. We are all of us, here in the rest of the world, crossing our fingers for you my USA people.
This year’s dynamic speaker line-up includes European jewelry artist Terhi Tolvanen, metalsmith/sculptor David H. Clemons, jeweler/enamelist Deborah Lozier, and repoussé master Douglas Pryor; plus Ideation: From the Belly to the Brain, a panel discussion featuring artists Melissa Cameron, Eva Funderburgh, and Gina Pankowski.
The Symposium will be in Seattle this year, rather than in Tacoma as originally planned. Due to unforeseen circumstances, we’ve had to make a last-minute change, so this year we will be at the Langston-Hughes Performing Arts Institute, with everything the Symposium has to offer: Silent Auction, Book Sale, and a fabulous line up of speakers and panelists, detailed above.
Date: Saturday, October 6, 2018 Location: Langston-Hughes Performing Arts Institute, Seattle, WA
It’s the day before I leave the USA permanently for Perth, Australia, so come say goodbye and join us at the after-party to end all after-parties!
3/ Uneasy Beauty
See my works Drone: Attempts to Kill… and RPG in this exhibition at The Fuller Craft Museum in MA, curated by Suzanne Ramljak the former editor of Metalsmith Magazine.
Uneasy Beauty: Discomfort in Contemporary Adornment will bring together 75 examples of contemporary jewelry and costume that demonstrate the immense power of adornment to impact us physically, emotionally, and intellectually. Showcasing wearable work in various media from regional and national artists, the exhibition will explore the outer limits of comfort through works that constrict body movement, irritate the skin, make extreme demands, or touch upon sensitive cultural nerves. Uneasy Beauty is part of the Mass Fashion collaborative, a consortium of eight cultural institutions that aim to explore and celebrate the many facets of the Bay State’s culture of fashion. This exhibition is curated by Suzanne Ramljak, an art historian, writer, curator, and former editor of Metalsmith magazine.
October 6, 2018 – April 21, 2019
Fuller Craft Museum
455 Oak Street
Brockton, MA 02301
Images from the photo shoot and from Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, with details about the Transformations 10 exhibition
The folks at Contemporary Craft shared these images this week:
I got these and my heart swelled – I’m so proud of Tegan and her son Calder, and of everyone for coming out on the 7th of July to make these images with me. There are so many of them, which I’ve shared with all the participants, but here’s the big group one:
and one of the pairings images I sent to Contemporary Craft
Contemporary Craft sent out their invitations this week for the free and public opening of the Transformations 10 exhibition on Friday the 14th of September, (at that link you can see the Tegan + Calder pairing too) as well as for the public artist talks that happen the next afternoon with some of the exhibiting artists. I told Pittsburgh folks at SNAG months ago that I would be going to this event, and I am making good on that promise. I will see this work installed before I leave the USA, and I hope that if you’re in the Pittsburgh area that you’ll come along and share the experience with me.
Next week I will send out all of the barter jewels to my container donors for this project, so stay tuned to see what they look like – and if you sent me something, your trade jewel will be in the mail next week!
The last post was all about the impending photo shoot of the above-titled work, which took place without a hitch just over two weeks ago. A huge ovation and a raucous Hip-Hip-Hooray! for my 56 intrepid volunteers, who modeled the 73 pieces that I had made in the previous month like absolute professionals. We worked basically by city, so we managed to get the works arrayed across our models.
I then took all the wearable works back into the studio to photograph them with the 73 containers from which they had come. After that I packed up the whole of 1.1.2017 and sent it to Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, and emailed a batch of the finished photos of the piece by the deadline, as per our contract. Then I reclaimed my weekends!
Contemporary Craft are now assembling the works of the 26 artists juried into Transformation 10: Contemporary Works in Found Materials in preparation for opening the exhibition and awarding the Elizabeth R. Raphael Founder’s Prize on the 14th of September.
Now I’m working towards other deadlines. Have I mentioned that I’ll be in an exhibition With Other Eyes starting at the Ruthin Craft Centre in Wales on the 29th of September? I’m currently waiting on my first ever order of enamel decals (don’t worry, you’ll hear about it) while slowly slicing some 2mm shipping container steel.
So that’s why I regretfully don’t have any images to share of the work, or the shoot, just yet. But if you seek them out on Facebook, a few of my volunteers posted their images and thoughts. And yes, I’m still doing the editing on the pictures that I didn’t send (we shot about 680 images on the Saturday in Fremont, and I took about that many again in the studio), so I will be able to share images of everyone involved, and the whole work, very soon.
Still seeking containers from specific places in the USA – we’re getting there!
*** UPDATED June 8th*** – Thank you everyone who has participated – the list is much smaller!
I have not yet been promised an object for my project from the places listed below. Please let me know (email@example.com) if you can send me a container from one of these towns, and I will take it off the list.