The Year to Come

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Designed by Renato Imboisi in Jalapao, Brazil

Well, time to draw breath and look ahead to what 2009 will unfold. There are reasons to think that it will be a full year, particularly for thinking about craft.

Ideas

Early next year, a new networking platform Craft Talk about contemporary craft in the antipodes will be launched. Expect news in mid-January. Craft Australia’s online journal Craft & Design Enquiry will provide an important academic forum for craft research. Meanwhile, the Journal of Modern Craft will be launching its new website in March, which should be a way of opening up the discussion about the place of craft in modernity.

Jewellery

Damian Skinner and I will continue work on the history of Australian and New Zealand jewellery. As this is an important opportunity to record some of the basic elements in the evolution of this remarkable antipodean phenomenon, some of the core material will be available on Wikipedia, opening up the process to the wisdom of the many.

With FORM I’ll be working on the exhibition Signs of Change to accompany the next JMGA conference in Perth April 2010. This is already proving to be the source of many interesting discussions about the role of functionalism in jewellery and the breadth of its audience.

Home & World

Many things to fill the calendar:

Also on the horizon for 2009 is a series of workshops on the Code of Practice for Craft-Design Collaborations. After the project’s endorsement by the World Craft Council, it is intended to host workshops on the ethical dimension of craft in Australia, Latin America, India and South Africa. It seems a good time to consider the way the crafted object might embody relations between people we think are worth aspiring to.

Gabriel Garcia Marquez was fond of quoting William Faulkner, who said on accepting the Nobel prize, ‘I decline to accept the end of man.’ While the future casts long shadows over 2009, the story of craft will certainly continue, perhaps even flourish.

Thanks for all your support during 2008 and best of fortune for the coming year!

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