1 year ago

Home is where the heat is


ARTIST STATEMENTS Elizabeth Casling and Graeme King Through Make Your Own, CIT and Courses-on-Demand, members of the wider community are enabled to make glass works at Canberra Glassworks and, in that sense, they’re all artists. Many are just one offs, but some people take advantage of Courses-on-Demand and the mentoring program to increase their skills and become independent hirers. This is a valuable aspect of the Glassworks community engagement and a selection of pieces made by these artists would make an important contribution to an exhibition showcasing 10 years at the Canberra Glassworks. Graeme and I are two of these artists and have each contributed a piece of work to this exhibition. Ellen Collins A revolutionary aspect of Walter Burley Griffin’s design for Canberra was to have every house supplied with electricity, generated by the Kingston Powerhouse. It is difficult to believe that having a reliable electricity supply 24/7 has only been a convenience available in (many) cities for less than a century. These pieces reflect on the short life span of technological devices which are all too soon relegated to historical objects, often unrecognisable to future generations. The use of transparent glass adds fragility and alludes to the transient nature of the original object. I am inspired by the Vanitas still life genre that emerged in 17th Century Dutch paintings at the height of the Dutch Empire. They were a didactic message to the masses about the transience of life and the dangers of the excesses of wealth and indulgence – a message highly appropriate to our own contemporary Western culture. Jacqueline Knight I am constantly fascinated by the phenomenological experience of using glass as a sculptural metaphor. I aim to speak to the viewer by way of a visual experience that reflects their sense of self. Mounted on a wall, the wings represent the essence of flight yet they are trapped, mid-flight and frozen in time. This in turn pushes the sculpture into the realm of architectural adornment. The adorned room becomes a metaphor for relationships and a current state of being. The materiality of glass offers many ambiguities resembling human interactions. Both humans and glass contain intriguing polarities; glass is strong yet fragile, luscious yet cold, heavy yet allows light to pass through. In black lustre, the reflective glass mirrors the outside world, outwardly opposing everything that is presented to it.” Jennifer Kemarre Martiniello Prior to the creation of Lake Burley Griffin the area where the Canberra Glassworks stands was a grassy landscape dotted with lowland native trees and shrubs. Close to the confluence of the Molonglo River and Jerrabomberra Creek the area may have been occasionally flooded giving rise to seasonal mudflats, yielding fertile soil for food species, including grains, seeds and bush fruits, enhancing its capacity to sustain traditional rotational habitation, camps, meetings and ceremonies. In these two works I have sought to evoke some of the textures, colours, forms and life-cycle changes across seasons of the more than 30 species of native grasses, shrubs, trees , reeds and rushes that characterised the landscape before non-Indigenous habitation. This diversity included multiple species of sedges, reeds, tussock and kangaroo grasses, eucalypts, casuarinas, Xanthorreas, kunzea, lomandras, grevilleas, bursarias, dianellas, acacias, she-oaks, wattles, tea trees and paperbarks which sustained more than 180 species of native and migratory birds, 34 of which are now endangered. Mark Elliot In the context of architecture (and town planning), I see the tree as the improvisational other - needed by humans to counterbalance the order of the built environment yet not always trusted for its independent mind - somewhat like an unruly artist - commissioned to provide an unspecified artwork for a building. The tree is a wild thing, which can be partially but never entirely tamed with its tendency to sprout roots and branches in unexpected places. In another sense, each tree is itself a piece of architecture which has grown as a unique variation on its own genetic plan and plays host to a vast array of inhabitants both above and below ground - many of whom either contribute to, or challenge its integrity. I encounter this tree each time I stay at the Glassworks Chapel where it stands sentinel (from a human viewpoint). Since reading HOME IS WHERE THE HEAT IS | 26 OCTOBER 2017 TO 14 JANUARY 2018

Peter Wohlleben’s The Hidden Life of Trees, I have come to think of it as a lone voice: a strong and independent presence. Each morning I smell the intense aroma of Eucalyptus – (or is it possum piss) as I walk barefoot around its base, my mind awakening to the raw sensation of gumnuts crushing underfoot. Emeirely Nucifora-Ryan Measured Spaces explores ideas of internal space through a series of three parts. These objects, through form, are vessels of a space or void. The circle represents a possibility of endless space through the expansion on all sides, while the materiality explores the oppositions between the roughness of concrete, the strength of metal, and the lightness and grace of glass. I am inspired by the rough masculinity of the Canberra Glassworks, which indicates it’s industrial use and age. The handmade quality of the lines inherent in the made forms, as well as the handmade quality of the drawn line, creates tension between the planed, mapped, and built architecture and industrialism. My hand etched lines map and interact with the light within the void, while also referencing the drawn, mapped and traced lines of architecture. To pay homage to the building and it’s reclaimed purpose, concrete and metal have been juxtaposed with blown glass. Meagan Jones, Louis Grant One of Canberra’s first public buildings, the Kingston power house was built between 1913 and 1915. Designed by John Smith Murdoch and built just as the planned Capital arose. This beautiful piece of Canberra history is a narrative of industry, labour, man and machinery. Now housing the Canberra Glassworks, the building is a reclaimed gem open to the public and to artists, crafts people and designers alike. A transitory space, drenched in light, shrouded in history and built into the fabric of the heritage listed building. This collaborative work by two Canberra Glassworks Visitor Experiences colleagues, one a glass artist, the other an arts manager with a background in visual communication, is inspired by the industrialised textures, materials, qualities and histories of the building. Photographs taken by Meagan Jones, capture fleeting moments within the building. Passages of movement are bathed in lustrous light, these details are highlighted through the etching onto industrial glass, by Louis Grant. Louis Grant The cast glass elements of this piece were made in 2015 as part of a second year exploration into the void, the built environment, and urban decay. Originally large and small arcs sat vicariously balancing on fine edges or points, holding each other up. These studies have been reimagined for this exhibition, responding to the original concept and to the new context. Cement has been cast onto the glass elements. Inspired by the poured cement walls of the 1915 Kingston Powerhouse, the moulds were created using wood panels. The wood grain is visible through out the cement elements, similar to that of the building. Further more, to add contrast, parts of the cement have been spray painted, referencing graffiti that was left while the building was laid dormant. This work pays homage to the narrative and history of the building, while playing with the constructed forms of decay and the void. Lucy Palmer Lucy strives to utilise the unique qualities of kiln formed glass to create an illusory sense of distance and depth; depicting vast landscapes, expansive skies and the quiet horizon where the two dissolve. Her inspiration derives from an interest in the incredible potential of distance and space to draw the viewer away from their immediate physical environment and allow the mind to escape. Ngaio Fitzpatrick A Mandala is a metaphysical representation of the cosmos, or a microcosm of the universe. A compass is a type of mandala indicating directions on earth, useful as a tool of navigation, a symbol of guidance encompassing the known universe towards a type of enlightenment. The work responds to the architectural window, space and void revealing a secular quality found in the elevated proportions, sweeping staircase and ever changing light conditions. Industrial steel components are often hidden behind building facades and the repurposed vintage glass is often hidden in collections, cabinets and op shops, both exposed in all their light filled glory in this location. Nick Doran Adams Born and raised in Ballarat, Victoria, Nick Adams was surrounded by history and grew up visiting one of the best collections of Australian Art at the Art Gallery of Ballarat. He studied glass at ANU, under Richard Whitely and Nadege Desgenetez, completing his honours year in 2014. At a young age Nick was exposed to early handheld gaming devices, such as the Nintendo GameBoy. The characters in these games are a basis for inspiration of his work. The images are a modern contrast to the ancient process which he used, mosaic HOME IS WHERE THE HEAT IS | 26 OCTOBER 2017 TO 14 JANUARY 2018

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