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Colours of art showcased in new SAM exhibition opening Friday

Visitors to the Shepparton Art Museum will experience art that reflects on the issues which affect us all when Craftivism. Dissident Objects and Subversive Forms opens this Friday evening.

The Shepparton Art Museum (SAM), in partnership with National Exhibitions Touring Support (NETS) Victoria presents this collaborative, playful and immersive exhibition featuring craft-based materials with a political intent, by 18 contemporary Australian artists and artist collectives.

Craft, activism and social change have long been interlinked; they have crossed boundaries and borders, genders and generations. Craftivism evidences this moment in contemporary art embracing craft techniques in order to explore and articulate the ideas and issues of our times.

Artists featured in the exhibition include: Catherine Bell, Karen Black, Penny Byrne, Erub Arts, Debris Facility, Starlie Geikie, Michelle Hamer, Kate Just, Deborah Kelly, Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran, Raquel Ormella, Kate Rohde, Slow Art Collective, Tai Snaith, Hiromi Tango, James Tylor, Jemima Wyman and Paul Yore.

Curated by SAM Curator Anna Briers and SAM Director Dr Rebecca Coates the exhibition addresses a number of themes.

“Gender, representation and identity are ever-present, because ‘the personal as political’ remains relevant today. Many artists are engaged with environmental politics and climate change, while others are concerned about contested borders, immigration and democracy. Many embrace relational production processes that implicitly promote collaboration and social connection,” said Dr Coates.

“Broadening our understanding of craft-making traditions, the artists in this exhibition subvert and extend these forms as vehicles for activism and social change, reflecting on the world in which we live. While some respond directly to artistic or political movements, others encourage social connection between community members with works that require participatory activation through collective processes,” said Ms Briers.

“Craftivism reveals the myriad ways that these artists challenge our perceptions of craft materials and approaches within a contemporary context, inviting viewers to rethink craft in a new light.”

Craftivism. Dissident Objects and Subversive Forms is a Shepparton Art Museum curated exhibition, touring nationally by NETS Victoria.

It opens on Friday 23 November at 6.00pm and everyone is welcome to attend. There will be Artist Talks from 5.00 to 6.00pm with Penny Byrne, Kate Just and Paul Yore who will discuss their work, processes and motivations. The exhibition has free entry.

Craftivism. Dissident Objects and Subversive Forms is a Shepparton Art Museum curated exhibition, touring nationally by NETS Victoria:

  • Shepparton Art Museum (VIC) – 24 November 2018 to 17 February 2019
  • Warrnambool Art Gallery (VIC) – 4 March to 5 May 2019
  • Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery (VIC) – 17 May to 21 July 2019
  • Museum of Australian Democracy (ACT) – 6 September 2019 to 2 February 2020
  • Bega Valley Regional Gallery (NSW) – 18 April to 13 June 2020
  • Warwick Art Gallery (QLD) – 3 July to 15 August 2020
  • University of the Sunshine Coast Art Gallery (QLD) – 12 September to 31 October 2020

Local artists encouraged to submit art ideas for SAM exhibitions in March

Early next year the Shepparton Art Museum (SAM) goes local with the spotlight on artistic practice from the region across a range of exhibition spaces including SAM Local Spotlight, SAM Best of Friends, SAM Education Lab, SAM Showcase, and the SAM Drawing Wall.

SAM Local Spotlight is an open call-out for a solo artist to exhibit a body of work at SAM. The call for entries is now open and local artists of all ages are encouraged to share their creativity and get involved!

SAM welcomes proposals from artists living in or originally from North Central and North East regional Victoria who maintain strong connections within these locations.

SAM’s Curator, Lara Merrington, said: “SAM Local Spotlight is an exciting, profile-raising opportunity for a regional artist. The aim of the exhibition is to encourage, stimulate and promote local and regional cultural activities as part of SAM’s annual program.”

“This is also great opportunity to gain professional experience working in an art museum context – working with SAM’s team across curatorial, marketing and communications, registration, education and public programs, and much more,” said Ms Merrington.

For further information on how to become the SAM Local Spotlight artist, click here. Submissions close on Friday 7 December, 5pm AEST. Artists can chat to SAM’s Curator Lara Merrington about their proposal prior to submitting on (03) 5832 8480. All applicants will be advised by 17 December 2018.

You can also show your art at SAM as part of the SAM Best of Friends open access exhibition. All Friends of SAM are encouraged to submit work. The exhibition’s purpose is to celebrate the creative practices of many local artists working in a range of media in the Goulburn Valley. It is a great way to see what other people are creating and to gain insights into the regional arts sector. Keep an eye out on SAM’s website in December for more information on how to apply.

SAM Education Lab is an exciting initiative directed at students and schools, giving them the opportunity to work closely with a contemporary artist at SAM. The second year of this hugely successful program, SAM will present an evolving exhibition project led by a contemporary artist for all student levels. This is a great way for teachers and students to get involved and get creative, using on of SAM’s gallery spaces to make and install work. For more information contact SAM, or ask to speak to one of our Education team.