|MATTER| Earth, Materials + Making

Part of the crafting interconnections season at the Barn.   


|MATTER| Earth, Materials + Making

10 September - 11 November 2022

Created by members of Applied Arts Scotland, this exhibition will explore environmental wellbeing through making; drawing on craft practices that value and respect natural resources, waste materials, biodiversity and production systems.

From the rural Highlands & Islands to the Scottish cities of Aberdeen and Glasgow, Applied Arts Scotland's Closing the Loop Group have spent the last 2 years developing a collection of exploratory works drawn from a diverse range of dynamic, resourceful and ecological approaches. These makers regularly meet online and participated in a micro residency at Hospitalfield to share good practice, encourage and support one another and to amplify their vision for environmentally considered craft in the future.

|MATTER| Earth, Materials + Making exhibition brings together ceramics, jewellery, lighting, textiles and more by leading Scottish makers alongside emerging talent.

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|MATTER| Earth, Materials + Making Tour

Kirstin Samuel is the creative director and founder of Mumo & Community. The brand works collaboratively with vulnerable communities and is sold internationally with ethically conscious retail partners.

It has a commitment to changing society through social enterprise and the process of inclusive design and community-led production.   Kirstin’s design process allows for the selection of different parts of printed or foiled fabric to make sure that all of it is used. Very little is wasted. Any imperfect fabric can be repaired and repurposed to allow it to be suitable for inclusion in final products.

The piece Kirstin is presenting at ‘Matter’ is entitled ‘Inclusion’. Each piece is cut from waste from workshops that train vulnerable people in textile design techniques. Collectively the imperfections create something of value when presented as a whole.

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Kirstin Samuel

Dr Allison Macleod was a medical doctor based in Broughty Ferry but poor health led to early retirement in 2011, after 30 years working in the NHS. During recovery she discovered fine wirework jewellery; it was a reconnection with hand skills learnt during their surgical career.

Allison graduated in 2019 with a degree in jewellery and metal design and now makes individual pieces of conceptual wearable art jewellery. Dr Macleod’s pieces reflect her science background yet progresses on to a more artistic process.

Forms, colours and mixed materials are combined to convey the concept, via digital design and CAD. Pieces for this exhibition have been made from plant-based 3D filaments mixed with waste materials.

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Allison Macleod

Ann Marie Shillito’s Zambian childhood set the seeds for her ethos of ‘making the most of what you have available’. Persisting with this attitude and approach is even more important now and she finds support and commitment from the Closing the Loop movement. The aim is to get as close as possible to ‘net zero waste’ in all her activities.

Ann Marie is, first and foremost, a jeweller and designer maker. Design and making skills add value to the materials used. Repurposed scrap and waste materials are combined with digital technologies to transform them into covetable wearables and homeware.

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Ann Marie Shillito

Aubin Stewart is an Aberdeen based jewellery designer. Aubin creates playful vibrant collections from her studio within the Deemouth Artist studio community.

Designs are often inspired by the materials she chooses to work with. These are re-purposed objects which are scavenged from the scottish coastline, collected waste and off cuts paired with delicate precious elements.

Hand skills, using limited tools, transform single use materials into precious components. Stitching, saw piercing and die cutting work away to create her jewellery pieces. The perceived value of what is precious is turned on its head. She enjoys using the element of surprise within her work when the true origin of a material Is revealed.

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Aubin Stewart

Carol Sinclair is a ceramic artist whose inspiration comes from the beautiful rolling hills and spectacular coastline of Angus. For more than 5 years, she has actively adopted a closed loop approach to her creative practice. The aim is that no clay or fired porcelain is wasted.

Each project starts by identifying a specific colour palette. Then the experimentation with materials begins, to form her signature patterns of circles and stripes. Other repurposed materials, including paper and plastic from her home and studio, are bought together to form an eclectic mix of materials. The result is a cohesive collection of unique pieces that complement each another.

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Carol Sinclair

Deirdre Nelson partners traditional techniques with contemporary processes, to create textiles that explore humour, place and social history. They have exhibited within community and educational settings, as well as more traditional venues. Communities they work with explore social and environmental issues through making.

Having an awareness of ‘the end at the beginning’ avoids an impact, both socially and on an environmental level. They try to maximise the use of reclaimed and recycled materials and minimise carbon emissions, pollution and the use of hazardous materials.

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Deirdre Nelson

Since graduating with Distinction from Edinburgh College of Art in 2012, Eleanor Symms has exhibited widely and has won awards for her contemporary jewellery. She is fascinated by different types of materials, notably reclaimed plastics, discarded by others and scavenged from beaches.

The shapes, colours and textures of these finds inform the unique pieces she creates. Combining non-precious and precious materials, her creative practice questions the nature of what is indeed ‘precious’ and what is considered disposable.

Hannah Ayre is a participatory artist who works with audiences to create socially engaged artwork. Collaborations with arts, environmental and heritage organisations have formed immersive experiences, focusing on wellbeing, nature connection and heritage learning.

Striving towards sustainability is important in her work. She frequently makes use of scrap materials and creates work from plants grown at her allotment. A specialism is alternative photographic processes. An emulsion made from plants is painted onto paper. An object is placed on upon it and exposed to sunlight: the result is an other-worldly anthotype.

The work comes from the earth and can be returned to the earth at the end of its life, through composting.

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Hannah Ayre

Sculptor and blogger Lar MacGregor produces unique artworks employing new and traditional crafting techniques. From her base in the Scottish Highlands she walks, and gathering stories: sitting quietly with nature to help her understanding the actions of humans. Transformed waste products, collected from scrapyards, skips and streets, have been exhibited nationally and internationally since her graduation in 2018.

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Lar MacGregor

The enigmatic Yellow Broom is composed of two Edinburgh College of Art Sculpture graduates, David Robson and Clare Waddle. Each structure is designed and hand-crafted within this partnership.

The Scottish Highlands see their workshop evolve sustainable materials or those repurposed from waste. The full spectrum, from timber to oven baked milk bottles, is encompassed.

Their aim is to create items that are utilitarian, well crafted, functional and aesthetically pleasing.

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Yellow Broom

Inge Panneels is an artist and researcher, with over 20 years as a practicing artist, interested in place making projects - working with spaces (buildings and sites), and places (its intangible heritage) mostly explored through the medium of glass and collaborative practices - she has increasingly questioned projects in the context of a sustainable future, both as an artist, and as a citizen.

She has continued the theme of ‘green’ making, started at the “Green” exhibition at the Collins Gallery in 2006 with Design-ED collective. Here, she explores the material role glass plays in our society. As a material that remains almost in perpetuity, it is paradoxically also (theoretically) infinitely recyclable. It should be treasured. Inge uses design fictions to explore tools that we already have and might still need to enable more effective climate action.

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Inge Panneels

Stefanie Cheong is a designer and maker who explores geology and rock formations to inform her work. She brings a contemporary aesthetic to traditional lapidary process by cutting found and discarded rock and creating jewellery and objects. Often these are paired with recycled and fair trade metals. Recently she has introduced making her own rocks from waste streams such as e-waste, plastics, glass and ceramics.

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Stefanie Cheong

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MATTER | Earth, Materials + Making

|MATTER| Earth, Materials + Making is part of the crafting interconnections season at the Barn.

Presentations by members of Applied Art Scotland as part of the online panel discussion 'Decarbonizing Applied Arts' 26 October 2022. Our panellists included; Hannah Ayre, Stefanie Cheong, Inge Paneels, Kirstin Samuel.

The discussion considered questions of decarbonization in Applied Arts and craft practices more broadly; drawing inspiration from these makers and the new circumstances of practice brought about by working with and thinking about environmentally considered craft. This included reflections from the makers on how this has played out in their practice through material choices and production systems, ideas of slow craft, thoughtful connections to place and social inclusion.

*Closed 10 November

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Decarbonising Applied Arts | Online Discussion | 26 October 2022
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