A wall of porcelain dust destroyed by human touch, a hint of a domestic interior and shirts embroidered with emotions – seven makers, working at different stages of their careers and in a range of craft disciplines, come together for the first Jerwood Contemporary Makers exhibition which opens in Scotland this week.
The exhibition, which can be seen at the Dovecot on 14 November until the end of January, is set to challenge and intrigue, showing craft in a new and unexpected way.
The makers selected for the exhibition have created work that responds to the theme of ‘touch’ – be it the experience of touching something, how a work touches its surroundings or how we are emotionally affected by what we see. Oversized ceramic vessels, lettered sculptures, embroidery and tapestry will sit alongside computer generated metalwork, jewellery installations and an architectural intervention.
For the exhibition, planks of oak of various sizes will be installed in the space, each inscribed with phrases from sea songs by letter sculptor Gary Breeze. Alongside this installation, a triptych of riven slate plaques will hang, also containing sea song lyrics.
Inspired by landscape, Sara Brennan’s tapestry begins as a body of paintings and drawings. She then translates these into vibrant, abstract, woven wall pieces.
Lin Cheung’s jewellery and objects will be presented in the context of a ‘hint’ of a domestic interior. Chairs, tables and shelves will blend, disappear and appear from the walls to create framing surfaces for her works.
Drummond Masterton’s metal pieces stem from an interest in geometry and typology. Using complex industrial machines and computer processes to create intricate surface texture and patterns that take hours to produce, he subverts the purpose of the machine, which is intended to speed up product manufacture. He will show his ‘Star Tessellation’ series.
Textile artist Deirdre Nelson has created three shirts for the exhibition. These shirts evoke ideas of empathy, patience and compassion, each one embroidered with flowers associated with these emotions. Her response to touch considers the sensation of something coming into contact with the body and the viewer’s emotional response.
Nicholas Rena will show over-sized abstractions of ceramic domestic objects such as jugs and bowls, displayed as a simple composition. Larger and more vividly coloured than his previous works, these new pieces address the theme of touch in their compositional interrelationship, which is based around the four cardinal points.
Ceramist Clare Twomey’s architectural intervention ‘Witness’ is a strip of wall coated with a layer of gold. On top of this, a fine surface of white, porcelain dust has been added. Over time and through human touch, the vulnerable surface will be bruised. The work will collect the actions of the audience, becoming a continual witness to acts played out in the space.
The exhibition has been initiated by the Jerwood Charitable Foundation and is hosted by IC: Innovative Craft.
Jerwood Contemporary Makers will show at the Dovecot, 10 Infirmary Street, Edinburgh from 14 November 2008 to 31 January 2009. Open Tuesday to Saturday from 10.30am to 5.30pm. Exhibition closed from 22 December 2008 to 3 January 2009.
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