Posted by learntobead on August 27, 2009
Need For Critical Writing and Dialog About Beading
One of the major gaps in Bead World is the support of more open and frequent critical writing and dialog about beading. What it is. Why it is. It’s relationship to art. The relationship of current modes and techniques to historical ones. Contemporizing Traditional Beadwork. Adding dimensionality. Why there are numerous ways to work thru the same stitch, like Peyote, Brick, Daisy Stitch or Right Angle Weave. Design elements and rules of composition underlying beading. Beading structures. Documenting beading techniques. Forms and functions of beading. Sex and sexuality, wealth and poverty, emotion and no emotion, and other pertinent themes underlying beading. Comparative analyses of artists works. Use of color with beads. The relationship of jewelry as display item and jewelry as item as it is worn. Why beads have power. What makes some jewelry resonate.
Bead World lacks an academic center, which would encourage such discussions. Bead World lacks magazines and journals which support these kinds of discussions. Bead World is very step-by-step craft focused, and doesn’t tend to raise a lot of questions. It doesn’t tend to support detailed documenting of beading traditions. It doesn’t support urgent efforts to document and collect beadwork of rapidly disappearing ethnic groups, such as those in Dafur Africa. It doesn’t create a clear sense of what is good beadwork, and what is sloppy beadwork.
We have a recent history of beading in the US that began around 1960, and few people have witnessed the story. Few people have asked deeper questions of the artists and teachers who first brought about an unbelievable increase in beading in the 1990s. A lot of information has been lost.
The information could be used to broaden the field, attract more people into beading, and encourage experimentation, research, deliberation.
At the Museum of Contemporary Craft in Portland, Oregon, they have created exhibits and ongoing discussions about criticality in craft, in general at least. Beading and jewelry come into play occasionally.
Their new discussion series — CALL + RESPONSE — is outlined on their web-site:
It’s definitely worth a visit. Be sure to read the full essays from each participant, as well as view images of the works associated with each essay.
Anya Kivarkis, area head, jewelry and metalsmithing, University of Oregon
Namita Gupta Wiggers, curator, Museum of Contemporary Craft
Complaints about a need for critical writing on craft surface with great frequency. Drawing on the musical concept of “call and response,” this exhibition opens a space for critical dialogue and exchange between craft-based artists and art historians. From nearly three years of discussion, studio visits and exchanges of ideas, the resulting exhibition presents artwork and essays by eight pairs of artists and art historians, all of whom currently teach in Oregon colleges and universities.
Kate Mondloch, assistant professor of contemporary art history and theory, University of Oregon on
Josh Faught, assistant professor and program coordinator of fibers, University of Oregon
Knitting was passed down to me from my grandmother. However, I attribute most of my early experiences with craft to my time in summer camp. In fact, I think it’s safe to say that I learned to weave before I learned to draw or paint. It’s a biographical aspect of my work that I still like to talk about since it locates my skill set from a time iconically loaded with issues of identity construction. In college, I studied art history and English but when I graduated I gained a bit more confidence in my creative abilities.
Abby McGehee, associate professor, Oregon College of Art and Craft on
Anya Kivarkis, area head, jewelry and metalsmithing, University of Oregon
For any student of material culture, objects provide the means for understanding social values, ritual and domestic procedure, and individual artistic development. Objects and structures are proxies for vanished makers and patrons, and remnants of the world they created. But there is always a tension between the substantiality of these physical remains and the absence of their historical context.
Kirsi Peltomäki, assistant professor of art history, department of art, Oregon State University on
Jiseon Lee Isbara, associate professor and fibers department head, Oregon College of Art and Craft
Hand-sewing, whether to join fabric pieces together or make a mark on them by embroidery, remains at the center of Jiseon Lee Isbara’s artistic practice, although she freely makes use of a sewing machine as well, and, on occasion, includes other techniques such as inkjet printing on fabric. A fiber-based artist by training and profession, the material and conceptual dimensions of Lee Isbara’s works simultaneously resonate with contemporary sculpture, particularly work by Eva Hesse and Mona Hatoum, and with the Korean textile tradition of pojagi wrapping cloths. Lee Isbara’s recent work involves pieced fabric stitched into patchwork forms and displayed in three-dimensional installations or two-dimensional wall arrangements. In any configuration, Lee Isbara’s work constitutes mental maps, visualizing territories that are coded and decoded in languages at once familiar and uncharted.
Dawn Odell, assistant professor, department of art and art history, Lewis & Clark College on
Sam Morgan, ceramics instructor and art chair, Cascade Campus, Portland Community College
Although the necessity for a division between the fine and decorative arts has been under assault for decades, the ghost of this separation continues to haunt discussions of contemporary craft. When considering ceramics, for example, the fine/decorative divide is often breeched by emphasizing the sculptural qualities of ceramics, both in terms of the objects’ three-dimensional form and also by assuming that the work is best contemplated from a distance. Sam Morgan’s art resists this conflation of ceramic as sculpture.
Rob Slifkin, assistant professor of art and humanities, Reed College on
Studio Gorm (John Arndt and Wonhee Jeong), associate professors, product design, University of Oregon
Understood in its most expansive sense, to design is to forge a possibility. Whether one sketches a preliminary study for a painting or sculpture, or draws a plan for a building or a piece of furniture – or outlines a draft for an essay – the act of design entails the projection of a desired future outcome from a present moment.
Matt Johnston, assistant professor, department of art, Lewis & Clark College on
Karl Burkheimer, associate professor and head of the wood department, Oregon College of Art and Craft
From Karl Marx to Clement Greenberg and beyond (and probably echoing as a refrain in this collection of essays), both craft and art are portrayed as heroic but losing enterprises within an increasingly pervasive dehumanization of life brought about by the growth of capitalist society. A tool-making species, in this apocalypse of our own creation, we are losing touch with basic hand-eye skills required to fashion, manipulate, and interpret objects; in effect losing the ability to re-imagine and re-make the world, and are instead becoming mere passive consumers of machine-fabricated commodities.
Anne Marie Oliver, assistant professor of intermedia and contemporary art theory, Pacific Northwest College of Art on
David Eckard, chair of the sculpture department and an instructor in the foundation and intermedia departments, Pacific Northwest College of Art
It would be a mistake, however, to view magic simply as a reenactment of social behavior, the logic of belief, or a mere lure or decoy by which attention is drawn away from some tasks in order for others, often traumatic or violatory, to be accomplished. In the final analysis, magic is far more disturbing than any conjectured relation between duplicity and consciousness, belief and disbelief, distraction and destruction.
Posted in Art or Craft? | Tagged: art theory, art vs. craft, bead world, beading, craft, critical thinking, design theory, jewelry design, museum of contemporary craft | 1 Comment »
Posted by learntobead on August 6, 2009
All Dolled Up: Beaded Art Doll Competition
St. Fedupia by Kathleen Lynam
Every other year, Land of Odds and The Center for Beadwork & Jewelry Arts sponsors a beaded art doll competition. This year’s deadline is August 31, 2009.
The theme is Earthen Mother. Each artist submits images of their doll. And each artist has to write a short story about their doll, starting with this sentence:
“The mirror reflects more than my hands can feel.
Lines, edges, shadings, a weariness under the eyes, an awkward stance.
Yet, not reflected is a certain vibrancy —
a compassion and wisdom and wonder so many people rely on.
Only you, my beaded art doll,
capture the fullness of me as I age in place .
You embody changes I want to make, so I aptly name you…”
Here our images of our first three submissions:
by Dawn Ott
by Bonnie Prebula
by Gabriella DeLawey
Posted in bead weaving, beadwork, Contests | Tagged: beaded art doll, beadwork, bonnie prebula, contest, dawn ott, doll artist, gabriella delawey, kathleen lynam, multi-media art, sculpture | Leave a Comment »
Posted by learntobead on August 6, 2009
PHOTOGRAPHS and JEWELRY and FASHION and BUSINESS
You have to be creative in how you stage the set for photographing your jewelry. If people are web-surfing, you want to entice them to stay on your page a little longer, rather than click-thru to somewhere else. If they are looking at items in a magazine or newspaper, you want them to linger a bit longer than turning the page.
I first began looking for some good ideas for photographing jewelry at the 7th International Festival of Fashion Photography in Cannes. There were few examples of jewelry photos, however. These included two by Marc Turlan
These didn’t excite me, so I kept web-surfing and came across the website of a fashion photographer names Niva Kedem. Now I was getting closer to the mark.
She groups her photos into photo-style categories, so you can actually learn a lot about imaging on her website, from how she groups her own examples.
It’s difficult to photograph jewelry. You need to convey details in the piece, and the details are small. You want to convey a sensibility about the piece — its emotions, its sexuality and sensuality, its use of materials, its relevance to certain contexts. Many of the components have reflective qualities, which can change colors in photos, or affect the colors of the nonreflective surfaces around it. You want to convey the artist’s style.
“The photography of jewelry can achieve a whole lot more than just depicting products. It can focus on unique details that generate very different feelings and can contribute to the visual communication of the jewelrys inspiration. Unfortunately, we see time and again that jewelry designers adopt a strangely ambivalent position when faced with how to communicate their products. This applies in particular to jewelry manufacturers in the initial stages of their careers. It is a crying shame that there are so many designers able to achieve the highest standards of precision and perfect craftsmanship in the production of jewelry and then proceed to take inferior photos of it that in no way do justice to their own excellent work. Conversely, established designers who are familiar with trade fair business and with handling the media have usually already discovered or experienced how important it is to define a clear approach in communicating ones own style of jewelry and its special features. An idea of who is or may be the target group for the jewelry can help the photographer or designer find a suitable language of images…. —
Communication With Jewelry Photography
By Christel Trimborn
You can have a “clean” shot or a “staged” shot. The clean shot shows the jewelry without any background or other details. The staged shot shows the jewelry in some kind of context. It may be worn by someone, or not.
Posted in business of craft | Tagged: advertising jewelry, jewelry, jewelry photography, marc turlan, marketing jewelry, niva kedem, photography, product photography | Leave a Comment »