Thursday, September 8, 2011

Studio Remix @ the Ontario Crafts Council

Just a quick heads up! this is the last weekend you have to check out the exhibition Studio Remix at the Ontario Crafts Council gallery, queen and ossington. 

The exhibition took over a year in the making, from the first conversation I had with curator Monica Chow when she visited me at the Artist Project in March 2010, to the final opening reception for the exhibition on August 4th.
The project was a huge undertaking, as each of us as we stepped out of our comfortable and familar studio practices to both teach and engage in the making of work in new materials.

Participating artists in the show include: Aneela Dias D’Sousa, Shuyu Lu, Benjamin Kikkert, Rose Angeli Ringor, Lizz Aston, Sylvia Nan Cheng, Micah Adams and Niko Dimitrijevic. Here is a look at some of the work:

Shuyu Lu, Assimilation (detail), 2011.
Textile hoops, stoneware clay, silkscreened underglaze, glaze

Micah Adams, Homemade Geology, 2011.
Fused and carved glass

Niko Dimitrijevic, Clouds, 2011.
Copper, brass

Lizz Aston, Porcelain 'wall paper', 2011. 
Paper, free-motion embroidery, burn-out, porcelain.

Exhibition catalogues are available at the Ontario Crafts Council, 
Here is an overview of what the show is about:
Ontario Crafts Council Gallery
990 Queen Street West
There are many factors that contribute to an individual’s decision to pursue a life of craft.  Nostalgia and personal history, cultural identity and community or family relationships, can deeply inform the aesthetics and theme of an artist’s work, as well as the material and techniques that are employed to achieve the desired effects.  These ideas and concepts can be expressed in other artistic and visual ways, so what compels someone to work with craft media?  The unifying trait of all craftspeople could be described as an innate understanding of material: they possess an intuitive knowledge of process – a natural aptitude that is honed through continued education, practice and exposure, and the ability to manipulate material to translate their ideas and concepts into multi-dimensional form.
Studio Remix presents an opportunity to transcend a particular material and confront, or embrace, a different set of material challenges.  Eight Toronto craftspeople who work in one of the four primary craft media (ceramics, fibre, glass and metal) have been partnered with one another, forming four collaborative pairs of artists who work in two different materials.  Each participant has been tasked with teaching their partner the processes and techniques of their own material to the extent that each member of the pair will be able to conceive and produce work using the material they have just learned.
By removing these craftspeople from their comfort zone and presenting them with a whole new set of material challenges, Studio Remix puts form to the underlying forces that drive creative processes.  Correlations between different craft media are revealed, and new materials operate to effect change in established bodies of work.  After all, a change of scenery always presents a whole new way of looking at the things you see every day.

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