One of the truly great annual exhibitions in Canberra is the Members Exhibition at Craft ACT. The members submit a piece or two to the exhibition and auction. CraftACT is a local collective of creatives who all seem to aspire to leadership in their various craft disciplines. Some craft skills I do not understand and some I like little but in this show you never see anything that is not worthy of exhibition.
Glass, furniture, fabrics, pottery, sculpture, metal, jewellery and other craft styles abound and demonstrate the creative potential of each approach.Most objects seem to be available for purchase If you have not seen this display it is only on till Tuesday December 14 2021 – It is well worth the visit.
In the lead up to Christmas the Beaver Galleries puts on a Small works show. Artists are asked to supply small (gift size) art works for exhibition. The show this year has over 20 artists expressing themselves in ceramics, glass, painting, works on paper and sculpture.
Below are a set of pics drawn from the show with the artist along side. There was not a take away sheet but each artist has a wall plaque with prices on it.
Holly Grace has a nuique capacity to represent Australian landscapes in her glass creations. She is awesome on alpine areas. Her latest exhibition has examples of her great skills. There is the richly textured greens, the inspiring engraved clear and whites and the big range of shapes and sizes in the objects. The gallery sheet says this set was produced as part of a “Thomas foundation Residency at the Canberra Glassworks this September” Below are the flyer, gallery sheet and some snaps.
If Craft ACT gets their professional members to put on an exhibition the variety and quality is going to be good. As they have a no pictures policy I can’t show you what is on display but the gallery sheet is some help and the flyer picture on the right is one of the great glass works in the exhibition.
The first objects you come to are a group of enormous magpies made of clay by Bev Hogg. Later you encounter a set of black tea cosies set on tea pots that look like plump Australorp hens by Ruth Hingston. Judi Elliot has included a bright mirror inset into a beautiful bright work of art. Another fascinating work was Nancy Tingey’s Ten(nis) Net Balls It is presented as a pyramid of tennis ball sized balls created out of recycled fruit bags. They look beautiful and they recycle rubbish – I was tempted to test if they bounce but resisted doing so.
Over the last couple of decades certain places have built an almost mythic status in my art mind. The Jam Factory is one of them. In lots of exhibitions there are inclusions of people who work from the Jam Factory and the calibre of the work is usually very high.
This exhibition at the ANU School of Art is gorgeous. They have curated samples from maybe 40 marvellous artists working in lots of design and craft media accompanied by a blurb and often a Qcode linked interview. As you move from person to person the marvels of creativity just keep unfurling. The materials, the colours, the forms all range across a side spectrum from the expected to the novel.
It was exhilarating to be exposed to such concentrated beauty.
Below is the flyer and some samples from half a dozen of the artists. At the exhibition you can buy a wonderfully published catelogue and on the wall there is a brief history time line covering all forty years of the great work of the Jam Factory.
Greg Healey Link figure
Stephen Bowers – White cockatoos
Takeshi – East chair
Frank Bauer – Grey Litchfield #063
This art prize was named for the first director of the South Australian Museum. In my view it is consistently the best annual art event coming to Canberra (now Ranamok is ended). Every year the exhibition brings a great range of media and styles and the creativity of their approach to the natural world is so enjoyable.
As with all art the stuff that appeals to me is often not the judges favourites. I will just feature here the four or five that I loved. If you go they have an awesome catalogue that features many more of the entries that did not come to Canberra. This exhibition is just the commended finalists in all the categories.
The categories have painting, works on paper, sculpture, youth and some others.
One I loved was a big web of black paper cut over a whitish background. It focussed on the at risk fauna in the Morton Bay area near Brisbane. It is by Nicola Moss called Priority Species.
Another one that I loved because it played around between subject and materials The object is a representation of one of those hundredths of a second photographs of a drip landing in a glass of milk. The fun thing is that the materials used are white marble. The work is One by Sally Wikes.
Sophie Carnel’s Introduced Species is a fun thing. Based on those thousands of racks in homes of souvenir spoons Ms Carnel has come up with an elegant set of spoons with the head usually celebrating a visit to Oodnadatta transformed into a finely created metal representation of a plant that has been introduced to Australia and has presumably become a problem. The elegance and richness of its cutural references was very enjoyable for me.
The final one I will include is Their lives in our hands by Wendy Jennings. You know the finger shadow puppets people do infront of projectors. Ms Jennings has created nine delightful representations of presumably at risk fauna build around hand shadow puppets. It is beautiful and powerful while being playful at the same time – great.
The exhibition at the Canberra Glassworks features works by five glass artists. Nest by Nick Wirdnam is displayed high on a plinth in the round gallery. It is made out of beautiful white glass twig like glass tubes interwoven around a steel mesh frame.It is beautifully lit and its high position gives it that wonderful unattainable vibe. Jeff Zimmer’s Union Bridge is a framed glass work that has a Turneresque atmosphere in its representation of the bridge and the water scene around it.
The other works are charming creations in various styles of glass work. Below are the Advert and the gallery sheet with a couple of pics.
Some art creates that awe feeling in you for various reasons. Wirdnam’s glass work does that with me. It is so polished and pretty. Perfection with a gleam is there in every work. I wanted to pick up some of these and others I had to resist the desire to touch the surface just to get that extra dimension of knowledge of the art work.Describing this work is silly. Camera pics do not do it justice but I will include half a dozen with the gallery sheet and flyer. Delightful to be close up with all these objects.
A great thing about visiting the M16 Artspace is meeting real live artists in their exhibitions. They take it in turns to staff the space. Today we met a fairly recently graduated artist Spike Deane whose work was on display. Her work brings together fabric, stitching, embroidery and glass. One set are enbroided wall decoration and some of the images from those are created in coloured glass. Emilie Patterson was involved in the recent Megalo – Canberra Glassworks collaboration and this work reflects with that experience. It has some beautiful sketches of nature artifacts and a set of glass objects with the same artifacts included in the glass cylenders.Ms Frasersmith’s work is all in glass in cold water-like colours. A great set of creations from three emerging artists.
Glass art today is a rich and spectacularly varied form. Kristel Britcher has woven a love of crystals and high artistic art skils to produce a marvelous set of beautiful objects. Some of them are practical household artifacts but others are simply beautiful striking crystal based expressions of skillful creation. They don’t allow photographs in this gallery so all I can supply are the Google images above and the four pages of information that are given out in the gallery.