Serious Bling – online incarnation

Radical Jewelry Makeover supremos Susie Ganch and Kathleen Kennedy presented Serious Bling at the Fuller Craft Museum earlier this year, and like many other shows it was forced to shut early due to COVID-19. It’s now reopened, with the Fuller Gift Store also set to reopen on the 16th of this month.

If you can travel to Massachusetts I’d heartily recommend a visit, but for those of us far from the action thankfully the online incarnation captures a lot of the exhibition. It combines installation shots with images from the artists to give you the extreme close-up that you would expect from to get to see such a show in real body.

Check out the impressive full-page spread of the album or go one-by-one through the images below:

RJM_press image copy

Richard Bell

“So, basically, right-wing governments, just one the first things they do is just slash the arts budget.

What that says to me is that art must be very powerful, if the first thing that the politicians do is to cut arts funding.

They are trying to disappear art in this country.

Whereas the creative arts employs 7.2% of the workforce.

You know, it’s about the same as mining and I’m happy to say, I’m proud to say that our industry pays more tax than the mining industry. “

Thanks NAVA and The Artist Files, writer Leya Reid and of course the inimitable Richard Bell for bringing this wisdom.

Zoom artist talk for A/US

works: 6016a, 6047, 6093. found steel, stainless steel, 750 gold, vitreous enamel

Too far/locked down to make a visit to Bridget Kennedy Project Space?

Me too…

It’s ok, put the Zoom artist talk in the calendar and we can say g’day while Bridget shows us the exhibit!

If you are in Sydney you can head along to Bridget Kennedy Project Space, 53 Ridge Street, North Sydney on Saturday the 12th of Sept for 12:00 midday. Or if you’re in another time zone, like me, it’s at:

Friday 11th – –
7 p.m.
: Seattle
10 p.m.
: Pittsburgh
– – Saturday 12th – –
7:30 a.m.:
India
10 a.m.
: Perth
11 a.m.
: Korea
12 p.m.
: Melbourne
2 p.m.
: New Zealand

And apparently I’ve caused a bit of a stir in the neighbourhood of the gallery, Ridge Street, North Sydney, with the title of the work that’s in the window. Bridget told me this morning that people have been stopping in to check that the gallery’s not closing!

Now open – Declaration of Sentiments!

Meant to open in Munich in March, the show Declaration of Sentiments has finally opened overnight in Ghent, Belgium at Galerie Pont en Plas. Our local maker, Nevin Arig, kindly sent along some images of works and the opening.

Sword and a couple of Caltrops works

Gallerists Nicole Thienpont and Aline Vandeplas are carefully masked up and ready to welcome you. If you’re in the area this show will be open until the 3rd of October at Galerie Pont en Plas:

Hooiaard 6 (corner Graslei)
B-9000 Gent
Belgium

Thursday & Friday 13.30–18.00
Saturday 11.30–17.00

Everthing Must Go, 2020

This was a really fun one to make.

The rack was an artifact of the capitalist system, made obsolete. I resented its presence on my street, yet I suppose I also felt sorry for it. And I sensed its opportunity. What can I say, I can’t hold myself out of this system.

The logic for making my works also came because of the rack. Designed to hold multiples (at least 16 types) of an object, plus a sign, it had very specific parameters. As did the objects it once held. While hanging from the rack designed to hold them, these 16 types of product had to be similar enough to fit, but different enough to require their own place in the grid. Their dimensions – length, width, height and weight – were almost identical, but their uniqueness was enough to necessitate that multiples of each of them be kept in the one store.

Intriguing, eh? I have my suspicions of what the rack held, but they didn’t pique my interest enough to investigate further. Instead I took it upon myself to design 18 versions of the same object, in two (almost identical) types, using the same ingredients for each one.

Simple!

Each neckpiece has a circumference of 800mm (give or take) making it suitable for most people to wear. The leftover material – available once the 800mm circumference parameter was met – became tassels decorating that piece. Thus the 12 Arm works each contain the same amount of green rack as one another, as do the 6 Row works. Pricing is based on the time it took to make each piece, which went up as each Arm or Row was sliced into more parts. Thus the more tassels contained, the pricier.

Each work is different, yet kinda the same.

Thanks capitalism!

Please check the full-sized images out at Bridget Kennedy Project Space and pop the Zoom talk in your calendar to see the pieces in motion with Bridget. The surfaces really are luscious and they each have a very pleasing weight – the benefit of the lighter weight of steel compared to most jewellery metals. Each piece was polished up with microcrystalline wax to protect the paint, which really brought out the beautiful green colour.

Everthing Must Go (complete installation) 2020

A/US opens today!

because everything is better as a .gif

Time to schedule a visit to Bridget Kennedy Project Space – or put my Zoom artist talk in the calendar.

If you’re far away, come say hi over Zoom next weekend – Sat the 12th of Sept at 12:00 midday Sydney time and at:
– Friday 11th
7 p.m.
: Seattle
10 p.m.
: Pittsburgh
– Saturday 12th
7:30 a.m.:
India
10 a.m.
: Perth
11 a.m.
: Korea
12 p.m.
: Melbourne
2 p.m.
: New Zealand

As you can probably tell, the rows and arms on the rack were made of two gauges of steel rod, the ones that made up the Row works are about 6mm diameter, while the Arm works come in at around 4mm diameter. The sides are of a robust steel tube of approx. 2mm wall thickness, and the top – the sign slot – is made of neatly welded steel C-section, as is the stabiliser bar welded to the lower section.

All of it is painted outside, the rows and arms before assembly, though there are rust patches at some places of wear. The way the rows meet the tube at each end is through a hole in the tube. This design ‘feature‘ meant that the row/arm combos could be held by their ‘going into the tube ends’ as they were painted. This hinge also allowed the row/arm combos to move (the second row bar, below the hinge bar, limited movement to only upwards), so the whole unit could be shipped relatively flat-packed. The ends of the rod that had been inside the tube showed visible fade out of the the green spray, and were all rusted, though to less than 1mm deep. Thus on 3 of the neckpieces there are at least two distinctive 2.5cm/1″ rusted sections (polished yes, but still distinctively brown in colour), a result of this manufacture/construction method.

In terms of pulling it apart, releasing the rows from the main frame, like everything else, was done with my trusty jewellers saw. The measurements of each piece were calculated before I started cutting, so once I’d marked the hinge row sections, I’d saw through the rod at the mark closest to the right-hand-side (cos I’m a righty and doing it left would mean the rack ‘arm’ closest to me would get in the way) and pop out the right-most tail before pulling the rest of the rod, all arms still attached, from the left-hand side of the rack.

The whole row-arm sections were a little unwieldy at the bench at first but they were fairly rapidly deconstructed and kept in their groupings. Gradually each arm was removed to make a work = 12 ARM neckpieces, and each row made a work = 6 ROW neckpieces.

What would you do with an apple green sales rack that had clearly seen better days?

Everything Must Go – WIP, 2020

Well here’s what I’d do. I’d take a photo of it as if it was a museum-destined object, measure and record its vitals as if it were a patient on a guerney with cascading symptoms, then start the remodel like it was a kitchen with asbestos linoleum floors – carefully.

And so I went, layer by layer, piece by piece. At the start with vague intentions, which grew and changed as I got to know my collaborator.

A/US opens this week

As a part of this show I’d like to introduce a new work: Everything Must Go.

Green sales rack rests on a street tree in a former incarnation…

I found this green sales rack back in March, as I was heading to my local cafe to have lunch with a friend, which turned out to be our last lunch before lockdown. I remember talking to her about the rack over lunch, (and the potential impending lockdown too of course) deciding if I was going to pick it up or not. It’s clearly a little bigger than the steel flotsam I usually pocket so I wasn’t too sure if it would be a worthwhile find.

When we were done she offered me a ride home, but I said no, as I wanted to walk past the green rack again. That’s when I took this photo and a couple of others, put away my phone, picked up the rack and marched it to my front porch. There it lived for a couple of months before I had the time and headspace to think about it.

What would you do with an apple green sales rack that had clearly seen better days?

Since most of you can’t go to Bridget Kennedy Project Space to find out you can check out her website. But if you wanna see me tell the tale, you can hang out with me for the rest of this week as I find and share a few ‘making-of’ images, before I wave you through to the the BKPS site for the full reveal. Hell, do both, or neither – choose your own adventure!

That said, you’re really in luck if you do happen to be in Sydney. The IRL show opens this week and you get to do what I promised I’d be able to (in an over-optimistic moment in June) but can’t – go see the show in person:

We’re excited to be announcing our first exhibition of the year! 
A/US by Melissa Cameron opens this Thursday 3rd September and continues until 26th.
View 24/7 in the window or visit during our usual opening hours.
Join Melissa for a virtual tour of the exhibition and  Zoom Artist talk 12noon, Sat 12th Sept. Copy the link and put it in the diary!
CLICK for more info on the exhibition and a preview price list.
Please get in touch for purchases. 

A/US – so named as the pieces are made from steel picked up over the last 3 years in my homes of that time span, Australia and the USA.

lgo

to borrow from a fave band, Life Without Buildings, lets get out!

in September!

(safety first y’all)

I will be in Sydney (fingers crossed) for the opening of A-US, my solo exhibition at Bridget Kennedy Project Space, on Thursday the 3rd of September. Look out for updates about virtual artists talks/Q+A in the upcoming months.

Also in September the group show Declaration of Sentiments will finally open at Galerie Pont en Plas in Ghent, Belgium. This is the one that didn’t quite make it to Munich in March. From the 6th of September – 3 October these works will finally get out! Unfortunately I won’t get be able to get that far out but hey, that leaves more room for owner Aline Vandenplas and y’all to get acquainted.