Craft ACT launches two new online exhibitions

Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre, one of Australia’s longest running visual arts membership associations, will present two new exhibitions online from 15 May to 27 June featuring emerging and mid-career artists from Canberra, the NSW South Coast and Adelaide who have openly exchanged knowledge of their respective materials and explored how these materials connect us as humans.

Craft ACT CEO and Artistic Director Rachael Coghlan said, “Craft ACT is delighted to present the work of four talented women artists who demonstrate the great advantage we have when we work together. These new exhibitions celebrate the long tradition of collaboration, mentorship and exchange within the craft community; traditions that will serve designers and makers well as we emerge from the COVID-19 crisis.”

Transference is a collaborative exhibition by ceramic and glass artist Robyn Campbell (ACT) and ceramicist Jo Victoria (NSW) that expresses their shared fascination with light and surface, and the potential of glass and porcelain to convey fragility and transience. By exchanging deep knowledge of their respective materials, through a supportive process of learning, teaching, experimentation and play, the artists have developed a new body of work in which the intangible elements of light, shadow and reflection are significant, changing the pieces as natural light and perspectives shift.

Both artists also take inspiration from the natural world and the landscapes they live in – Campbell being inspired by the Canberra landscape known as the “bush capital” and Victoria finding inspiration from the beautiful coastal landscape of Mossy Point, NSW.

Artist Jo Victoria said, “The collaborative opportunity to share skills and material knowledge with glass artist, Robyn Campbell has been a luxurious and stimulating creative process that has extended both our practices beyond what we could have achieved individually. Our love of the purity of glass and porcelain and their respective interactions with light has been the platform to push our art practices to new and exciting possibilities.”

A Common Thread by emerging makers Sam Gold (SA) and Harriet McKay (ACT) is a multidisciplinary collaboration encompassing textile painting, ceramic sculpture and installation. Concerned with the concept of connection – connection to a material and in turn the way this connects us as humans – this exhibition seeks to explore how time and space inform the artist’s behaviour with material, and lament on the almost ritualistic process of repetitious acts during the creation process.

Adelaide-based emerging ceramic sculptor and JamFactory ceramic associate Sam Gold explores this notion through clay and has created sculptural forms through repetitive mark-marking embedded within the clay that draw attention to the rhythms of making. Using the body as a tool, the clay becomes a site to document time and experiential narratives.

Award-winning Canberra based textile artist Harriet McKay layers naturally dyed felt, calico and raw canvas to create fibrous collages. Through a process of play, the interaction of different materials and the practice of repetitive trial and error, McKay’s works are arranged, ordered, and moulded the same way a painter pulls and pushes the paint around the space of a canvas.

Artist Sam Gold commented, “It has been both inspiring and satisfying to collaborate with Harriet and find that despite our different mediums, the concepts underpinning our pursuit for making work is a common thread that runs deep through our practices. Utilising our shared experience, the cathartic enjoyment of touch and by weaving tactile stories together across disciplines, we were able to share technical approaches to materials and philosophies which allowed our practices to deepen.”

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