Roseanne Bartley is one of Australia’s most innovative jewellers. She has pioneered both technical and conceptual developments in the use of found materials. At heart, her jewellery projects attempt to connect people together through the form of body ornament. For Welcome Signs, she has present the first in a new series that broaden the process of jewellery making to freshly engage neighbourhoods. Her work demonstrates the potential of jewellery to counterbalance the increasing physical isolation of contemporary life in info-hubs.
Roseanne Bartley migrated to Australia from New Zealand in 1988 to study Gold and Silversmithing at RMIT (Melbourne), she completed a Masters Degree by Research at RMIT in 2006. Roseanne was awarded a residency at the Australia Council Barcelona Studio in 2004, an Australia Council New Work Grants in 2001 and 2006, an Arts Victoria Presentation Grant in 2001, an Arts Victoria Artist in Schools Residency in 2008, and an Incubator Seed Pod Grant mentored by the performance Company Punctum in 2009. She has participated in cross-disciplinary workshops led by live art tactile intervention artists PVI Collective and Dr Shelley Sacks and Dr Wolfgang Zumdick of the Social Sculpture Research Unit Oxford, Brookes University, UK. Her work has been published in Sustainable Jewellery (2009), New Directions in Jewellery 2 (2007) and Craft Unbound: Make the Common Precious (2005).
My work is created from the poorest of poor materials, I collect and observe from what has been left behind, in my immediate neighbourhood or as I travel. From a resource more generally viewed as disposable or of little cultural significance I find a potent materiality that retains something of the background noise of history and experience. I transform the unwanted to a state of ‘wanted-ness’ and invite a recalibration of what it might mean to be precious.
Seeding the Cloud: A walking work in process is a roving environmental craftwork. The process involves walking through the urban fabric of Melbourne (streets, laneways and parklands) carrying a small pack of hand tools. I collect fragments of hard plastic, pausing as I go at bus stops, picnic tables or park benches to drill and thread the fragments with silk thread and plastic beads. At the walks conclusion the be-jewelled length of plastic fragments is threaded to a larger matrix of looping formations.
Through repeat performances of this process a multi string necklace is formed, the product of which offers multiple forms of engagement. Unfolded it depicts a cartographic relationship between matter, time and place. Gathered up it can be worn on the body by one person or shared and interacted with by multiple people.
My intention is to invite participants into this process and to walk, gather and work together across a breadth of neighbourhoods, states and nations. I welcome you to join me in this process.