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Exploring the interface : negotiating the boundaries between art and craft


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Jackson, SM 2011 , 'Exploring the interface : negotiating the boundaries between art and craft', Research Master thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Exploring the Interface negotiates the boundaries between the often‐disparate practices of art and craft. The interface, as the point of interplay between these practices, is offered as a metaphor for the negotiation of the physical and psychical boundaries of self. This project asks how these practices can be navigated and if the interface can signify the spaces of one’s emotional and corporeal identities. It also questions how the maternal relationship and feminine and domestic archetypes contribute to the construction of gender.
The project aims to extend the traditional use of domestic craft while honouring the semiotic potential of its feminine associations. I endeavour to create an expressive device from mute craft materials and techniques using the language of the object and the poetics of metaphor. I seek to evoke memory and the senses by activating the gallery space in a series of narrative dramas that play out inside domestic constructs.
My artwork takes the form of a series of installations using various materials ranging from those traditionally associated with domestic craft to more ephemeral organic matter. Handcrafted objects reside with ready‐mades while garments and domestic artefacts nestle amongst furniture.
The project commenced with an investigation of various hierarchies pertaining to gender and practice. An exploration of traditional craft materials and techniques led to innovative approaches and a consideration of the maternal legacies of the craft tradition. The amassing of craft materials and objects suggested a wealth of memories, histories and untold narratives. The expressive potential of the craft object was explored and what emerged was the performative function of the artwork as a means of activating senses, memory and space.
Artists who extend craft beyond traditional application, including Judy Chicago, Fiona Hall, Freddie Robins, Anne Farren and Dave Cole, have influenced experimentation with the expressive potential of materials and techniques. The maternal relationship is explored through the work of Barbara Hanrahan, Lindsay Obermeyer and Kay Lawrence. Artworks by Anne Wilson, Jana Sterbak and Magdelena Abakanowicz inform body‐specific work that focuses on corporeal elements of gender. Mnemonic artworks by Louise Bourgeois, Tracey Emin, Magdalena Bors and Doris Salcedo provide a reference for memory, narrative and domestic based installations.
Exploring the Interface focuses on negotiating various boundaries as a metaphor for the construction and deconstruction of ideas of self. The work takes up a symbolic position swaying between the physical and psychical spaces of subjectivity. Inner and outer domains manifest in narrative constructs that inspire and are inspired by memory and lived experience.

Item Type: Thesis - Research Master
Authors/Creators:Jackson, SM
Keywords: negotiating the boundaries between art and craft
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Copyright 2011 the author

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