Wednesday, 6 May 2015

BESPOKE: Design for the People

I thought I would just remind you that the 'Bespoke: Design for the People' exhibition continues at the Museum of Australian Democracy (MoAD) until November this year.  Here is a photo of the work in situ.
'Political cover-up' on the chaise; and 'Spin'  on the floor
I was inspired to create ‘Political Cover-up’ by imagining who would be using the chaise-longue and under what circumstances.  Mental images of tired politicians and their staff grabbing a quick nap during late-night sittings inspired the form of the blanket and floor rug. The patch-work blanket of original pre-1988 newspaper political articles can be viewed as an object that covers or protects the person on the chaise-longue. Alternatively, it can be seen as a journalistic “cover-up” – hiding the truth beneath or within it. The hand-embroidery is a metaphor for “embellishing a story”, as in journalism, or as “embroidering the truth”, as practised by unscrupulous politicians.

Similarly, the small floor rug, ‘Spin’ refers to the way selective information can be “swept under the rug” and the cut paper reminds us that what is published is not always the whole truth, or in the order that it is presented.

The use of newspaper as a blanket or covering was a practice often adopted by the homeless and down-and-out or those with limited resources in challenging conditions.  Paper has also been used traditionally in quilt-making as templates for pieced quilts – often old letters or newspapers were used because they were not precious materials and were immediately to hand in the domestic environment.

Other artists selected to make work for Bespoke are: Jennifer Robertson, Cecilia Heffer, Niklavs Rubenis and Caren Florence in collaboration with Melinda Smith.

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