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January 2014 - Shortlisting for Major Public Artwork.

January 2014 – Shortlisting for Major Public Artwork.

In January, February and March I worked on a diverse mix of projects that demanded a next level approach and work ethic. I really hit the ground running in January. I was shortlisted, along with three other Australian Artists, for a 500sqm Public Artwork Building Facade Project in Brisbane. The Artists included the talented Mandy Ridley (Brisbane), Stuart Green (Perth), Alexandra Knox (Melbourne) and yours truly. The project result is still pending so I can’t share the details with you just yet. Fingers crossed on the outcome!

Space + Moooi 2014 Design Residency Flyer featuring the iconic 5 O'Clock Chair by Nika Zupanc. Image courtesy of Space.

Space + Moooi 2014 Design Residency Flyer featuring the iconic 5 O’Clock Chair
by Nika Zupanc. Image courtesy of Space.

In January I was also shortlisted for the Space + Moooi 2014 Design Residency along with eight other talented Australian Practitioners. While I didn’t take home the gong I gained some great perspective and insight into my own practice through the process. Congratulations to Tom Fereday for being awarded the Residency!

In the making - Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013/14. Photography Christina Waterson.

In the making – Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013/14. Photography Christina Waterson.

Celestial Analogue 2013/14 for Chain Reaction, a great new exhibition at artisan opening mid February 2014

Celestial Analogue 2013/14. Photography Christina Waterson.

Throughout January and February I was busy in the studio making the finishing touches to Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013-14 for the exhibition Chain Reaction, that opened at artisan on 20 February 2014. Read more about the exhibition and the work here!

The 2014 AIDA jury (L-R): Paul Kelly, Susanna Bilardo, Hamish Guthrie, Joanne Cys (jury convenor), Geraldine Maher, Victoria Judge, Matthew Blain, Christina Waterson and Ryan Russell. Not pictured is jury sustainability advisor, John Gertsakis. Photography Jonathan Butler. Courtesy of ArchitectureAU.

The 2014 AIDA jury (L-R): Paul Kelly, Susanna Bilardo, Hamish Guthrie, Joanne Cys (jury convenor), Geraldine Maher, Victoria Judge, Matthew Blain, Christina Waterson and Ryan Russell. Not pictured is jury sustainability advisor, John Gertsakis. Photography Jonathan Butler. Courtesy of ArchitectureAU.

It was a pleasure to be a return jury member and Co-Chair for the 2014 Australian Interior Design Awards in March. The awarded projects will be announced at a special event in Melbourne in May 2014. Visit the AIDA website for details.

Tracemetal 2014

Tracemetal 2014 released in February 2014. Photography Christina Waterson.

In March I launched Tracemetal, a special edition of Tracelet in metal. Tracemetal is stocked with the amazing Fashion Designer and creative genius Gail Sorronda, in Brisbane. Read more about Tracemetal and stay tuned for more stockists to be announced.

Assignment 4 for Philosophies of Design Subject with Haig Beck and Jackie Cooper. Photography Christina Waterson.

1st year Bond University Architecture students parade their mixed media assignment ‘Complexity and Contradiction’ hats for Philosophy of Design coordinators Haig Beck and Jackie Cooper. Photography Christina Waterson.

In March I assisted the truly legendary Haig Beck and Jackie Cooper (UME magazine) as they coordinated and presented the Philosophy of Design Subject for 1st Year Architecture students at Bond University, Gold Coast.

On 26 March 2014 I joined members of the visual arts community in celebrating the outstanding contribution and achievements of Fiona Foley (Artist and Adjunct Professor at UQ) and Julie Ewington (Curator and Head of Australian Art at QAGOMA) as they were awarded the Australian Arts Council’s 2013 Visual Arts Award. I had the pleasure of working with both Fiona and Julie during time at UAP and The Queensland Art Gallery. It was great to witness such talented, intelligent and committed women receive the awards. See the event in a slide show format here by Photographer Mick Richards.

The Escape for One Can, artisan.

The Escape for One Can, exhibited at artisan. Photography Christina Waterson.

Keeping it fun and simple I contributed the work ‘The Escape’ for the One Can exhibition that opened at artisan on the 31 March 2014. More about the brief set by Quench, the exhibition and work here.

Early morning work in the studio. Photography Christina Waterson.

Early morning work in the studio. Photography Christina Waterson.

During January, February and March the studio was abuzz with an eclectic mix of new work, equipment, meetings, bids, tenders, collaborations and partnerships and lots and lots of making. I look forward to sharing with you these projects as they are realised, made public and formally launched over the coming months.

 

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In this the second instalment of From the Vault I’ve really dug deep and gone back to the early days; showing the diversity and richness of my practice. I’ve sifted through Polaroids, black and white negs, Kodak prints and drawings. Once again the process has been positively affirming. I have included a few descriptions for the harder to place projects and works. Enjoy!

House for Bachelard. Design, drawings and photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

House for Bachelard (1994). Design, models, drawings and photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

This exploratory project, House for Bachelard, was designed while studying Architecture at The University of Queensland in 1994. The 2nd Year Architectural Design Studio was run by Professor John Hockings.

PART 01: ABSTRACTIONS OF HOUSE. On reading The Poetics of Space by Gaston Bachelard, students were asked to communicate its essential concepts via a maquette (concepts such as curved space, corner/huddle, and progression between polar states etc) Through an intensive model making process I explored ‘hidden space’ and tried to capture the feeling of the spaces described in The Poetics of Space. Then in a series of exercises involving the abstraction, duplication and repetition of our original concept model we were challenged to consider the qualities of spaces revealed by this process and match them to the prescribed areas of a brief. The brief was for a weekend house for the author Bachelard.

Abstractions of House study model 1994. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Abstractions of House – Study Model 1 (1994). Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

Abstractions of House - Study Model 2 (1994). Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

Abstractions of House – Study Model 2 (1994). Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

PART 02: HOUSE FOR BACHELARD. My proposition for his ‘house’ was a camp-like structure providing basic necessities for Bachelard’s weekend stays. It was nestled within the landscape of Point Lookout and orientated to minimize oncoming winds. The long landscape wall allowed Gaston to survey the coming weather. It shielded his vegetable garden from the strong winds. The bookshelf was considered as a large ladder that stretched from the cellar, through the reading room and up to Bachelard’s sunny sleeping cone. The cellar lay within the earth and provided a dark cool retreat.

House for Bachelard  - Sectional Project Model (1994). The model was 1.8 meters in length. Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

House for Bachelard – Sectional Project Model (1994). The model was 1.8 meters in length. The middle and bottom photos are taken from the same view but one shows the ground plane intact while the other reveals in section the cellar below. Photography by Christina Waterson 1994.

Peter Light 2000. Lighting commission for Elision Ensemble's practice space. Photography Christina Waterson 2000.

Peter Light 2000 lighting commission for Elision Ensemble’s practice space, South Brisbane. Photography Christina Waterson 2000.

Raku Test Patterns 2001

Raku Test Patterns 2001. Made during a Ceramic’s Elective while studying Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology in 2001. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Ceramic Family of Vessels 2001. For a Ceramic's Elective while studying Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology 2001.

Ceramic Family of Vessels 2001. For a Ceramic’s Elective while studying Visual Arts at the Queensland University of Technology in 2001. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Array Study 1 (2007). Polypropylene. Photography David Sandison.

Array Study 01 (2007). Veneer. Photography David Sandison.

Array Study 2 (2007). Polypropylene. Photography David Sandison.

Array Study 02 (2007). Polypropylene. Photography David Sandison.

Fuzzy Dub the concept for reloved Designer stories at the Sysney Powehouse 2010.

Fuzzy Dub (2010) the concept for my reloved – designer stories  piece at the Sydney Powehouse. Concept and drawing by Christina Waterson 2010.

“Once desired and loved but eventually discarded, the essential furniture item – the chair – has a long, rich and often poignant past… Contemporary design and bespoke beauty merge to transform a tired furniture piece into a work of art.” Brief by Sydney Powerhouse 2010.

Find a chair, relove it and tell a story. My response to this brief explored the origins of my own creative spark. The first chairs I distinctly remember were our school chairs and at that time I was heavily into craft especially making pom poms. I playfully combined these two memories together to make Fuzzy Dub for the exhibition. By taking two discarded and outgrown school chairs and binding them with recycled materials (including fishing nets and fabric strips) they were reused to make a large-scale pom pom. The exhibition was held at Sydney Powerhouse as part of the 2010 Sydney Design Festival. It included reloved chairs by Andrew Simpson (Industrial Design), Liesl Hazelton (Jewellery), and Adam Goodrum (Industrial Design).

Fuzzy Dub the process, 2010. Photography by Jon Linkins.

Fuzzy Dub the process (2010). Photography by Jon Linkins.

My finished Fuzzy Dub, 2010. Every time I looked at it it made me laugh! Photography by Jon Linkins.

My complete Fuzzy Dub (2010). Every time I look at Fuzzy Dub it makes me laugh! Pretty fun and out there! Photography by Jon Linkins.

 All works by Christina Waterson. If you would like to check out From the Vault 01, the previous post in this series, click on this link.

 

Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013 - 14. Recycled cardboard and Pigment Paint.

Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013 – 14 (recycled cardboard, pigment paint). Photography Christina Waterson.

My latest work, Celestial Analogue, records the ideal geometry of an immeasurable physical experience.

While recently hosting some visiting international friends who had never experienced a clear view of the night sky I rediscovered my own deep memories of the Milky Way. My friends normally live in London where the Milky Way has not been visible since the Industrial Revolution; due to pollution and compounded by big city light spill. Growing up in rural Queensland with a glorious view of the Milky Way I had perhaps taken this familiar sight for granted.

On attempting to explain something so unimaginable, immense and elusive as the Milky Way to my friends who had never witnessed it directly, I realised that it was nigh impossible to communicate the experience. Even images fell short. A visit to a remote location was undertaken to let them experience it directly for themselves.

Detail

Detail from the right side approach. Photography Christina Waterson.

Detail

Zooming into the detail – so close yet so far away. Photography Christina Waterson.

Celestial Analogue emerged from these encounters. Though also very beautiful Celestial Analogue is an ideal representation of this immeasurable physical experience. Repetition of the reduced elements create a sense of movement across the work’s surface. With an ever shifting pattern and spatial rhythm it remains illusive when experienced from different moments and positions.

The Process.

Pieces patiently masked, painted, scribed and cut. Photography Christina Waterson.

Celestial Analogue was patiently assembled from hand cut, painted and folded recycled cardboard. It meaningfully extends my previous collections of work including The Bloom Series 2009, Taking Flight 2010 and Scale Screen 2012.

Celestial Analogue Detail.

Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013- 14 view from the left side approach. Photography Christina Waterson.

PS I must admit it was hard to photograph this work in the exhibition space. With every passing car reflected light rays created hot spots and cool spots across the work. I endeavour to return one night and re-photograph the work more evenly lit.

Abe Muriata holding one of his beautiful bi-cornial baskets. Photography by Darcy Clarke.

Abe Muriata holding one of his beautiful bi-cornial baskets. Photography by Darcy Clarke.

As one of two artists nominated for the Chain Reaction exhibition by the fantastic Elie Moubarak (Gerard’s Bistro, Laruche and Lychee Lounge), I in turn then selected practitioners whose work and generous spirit continue to inspire me. One such practitioner is Abe Muriata, Girramay man of the Cardwell Range area. Abe is a painter and potter, traditional rainforest shield maker and self-taught weaver.

I feel a deep respect for Abe Muriata through the joy of experiencing his work on a daily basis. I wake each day to one of Abe’s beautiful bicornual baskets, or Jawuns, that hangs beside my bed. Jawans are traditionally woven by women. Abe is the only man to weave them. His delicate and intricate weavings have a modest yet palpable presence. With exceptional skill, precision and material sensitivity, Abe weaves both traditional and contemporary materials into breathtaking bicornual baskets unique to the rainforest people.

The beautiful shadows. Photography by Christina Waterson,

The beautiful shadows created by Abe’s lawyer cane Jawun transport me. Photography by Christina Waterson.

In those first personal visioning and awakening moments of morning my eyes often rest on the soft form of his lawyer cane Jawun. Its distinctive strata and layering create a myriad of fragile shadows. My mind wanders and I imagine what it would be like to rest inside the basket, held lovingly by the inner curves of its enveloping surface. In this way Abe’s work engages me to look deeper and transports me to a realm of possibilities and creative moments of insight.

View more of Abe Muriata’s beautiful work through the Girringun Aboriginal Arts Centre.

See Abe’s work close up at artisan: idea skill product from 14 February 2014 as part of the Chain Reaction exhibition, and view the special links Abe has selected; renowned practitioners Emily Murray and Brian Robinson.

Celestial Analogue 2013/14 for Chain Reaction, a great new exhibition at artisan opening mid February 2014

A sneak peek of Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013/14 my new work for Chain Reaction; a great new exhibition at artisan, opening in mid-February 2014. Photography Christina Waterson.

Chain Reaction is an exhibition opening in February at artisan: idea skill product. It’s special because it highlights the sometimes invisible but essential connections between practitioners.

As the title hints the exhibition was generated by a series of reactions through craft and design practitioners selecting the exhibitors. Creative entrepreneur and local craft and design supporter, Elie Moubarak (Gerard’s Bistro, Laruche and Lychee Lounge; designer, maker and engineer) started the process. Elie nominated two Queensland practitioners whose work inspires him. These two artists in turn nominated another two makers each and so on. Fifteen Queensland creative practitioners working across different mediums and scales form the links in Chain Reaction. They include:

Abe Muriata, Emily Murray, Brian Robinson, Barbara Heath and Malcolm Enright, Andrew Ness, Michael Phillips, Lucas Salton, Russell Anderson, Rebecca Ward, Christopher Trotter, Remo Vallance, Hannah Cutts and Fukutoshi Ueno.

In the making - Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013/14. Photography Christina Waterson.

In the making – Celestial Analogue (Stellar) 2013/14. Photography Christina Waterson.

I was one of the lucky practitioners selected by Elie. A beautiful honour! I selected practitioners whose work and generous spirit have personally moved me – Abe Muriata (Girramay man of the Cardwell Range area, Weaver and Sculptor) and Enright Heath Trust (Malcolm Enright, an artist and commercial designer and Barbara Heath, jeweller and sculptor). Stay tuned as I post about these inspirational people as well as the work I am making for the exhibition, Celestial Analogue 2013/14.

Chain Reaction is one of those exhibitions that is an absolute joy to be a part of. It opens at artisan: idea skill product on 14 February 2014.

A happy dance celebrating the Hightide Exhibition opening at artisan, Fortitude Valley Brisbane. Photo by Darcy Clarke.

A happy dance celebrating the Hightide Exhibition opening at artisan, Fortitude Valley Brisbane. Photo by Darcy Clarke.

With the fabulous Hightide: Queensland Design Now exhibition on show at artisan for only one more week, I thought I would share some of my work featured in the exhibition – up close and personal specially for all my interstate and international friends!

Final touches on the X-screen.

Final touches being made to solid timber X-screen (Komodo Series 2008) on installation day. Photography Simone Jones (artisan).

X-Screen view from below. I love the complexity of the weaving and the play of shadow from this angle.

X-Screen view from below. I love the complexity of the weaving and the play of shadow from this angle. Photography Christina Waterson.

Story Boxes showing the conceptual development of each project and relationships between them.

My special story boxes showing the conceptual development of work displayed and relationships between each series. Photography Christina Waterson.

Tracelet Story Box.

Tracelet Story Box – tracing the conceptual development and potential of Tracelet 2012. Photography Christina Waterson.

Tracelet was on show alongside pieces that formed its conceptual development. These were presented in one of my archive story boxes that I make for each of my projects, installations or collections.

Story Box Construction for The Bloom Series.

The Bloom Series 2009 Story Box showing the original small sculptural studies as well as formation of the seven piece furniture and home wares range. Photography Christina Waterson.

And my personal favourites Lift Stool and Tilt Mag Rack from the Bloom Series 2009.

And my personal favourites Lift Stool and Tilt Mag Rack from the Bloom Series 2009. Photography Christina Waterson.

For those who can make to the exhibition before it ends drop into to artisan: idea skill product until 8 February 2014 to see all of the designers’ great work on show!

SOME GREAT NEWS ON THE WAY. Enjoy your day!

Jacaranda in bloom at the University of Queensland, St Lucia.

Jacarandas in bloom at the University of Queensland, St Lucia (October 2013).

An early hot Australian summer saw many flowering trees bloom early. Delicate blooms with startling colours provided a haven for birds and insects. Here are a few of my favourites that bloomed in succession – some native and others embraced just the same as part of our urban landscape and lives.

Flame Tree on Gloucester Street, Highgate Hill.

A majestic Illawarra Flame Tree on Gloucester Street, Highgate Hill, Queensland (October 2013).

I was in Melbourne when the Silky Oak's were in bloom (near Space Furniture in Richmond, Melbourne Victoria).

I was in Melbourne when the Silky Oak’s burnt honey blooms were in flower. This one spotted near SPACE Furniture in Richmond, Melbourne, Victoria (November 2013).

Arcade of Tamarind Trees flowering along Dornoch Terrace, Highgate Hill.

Arcade of Tamarind Trees flowering along Dornoch Terrace, Highgate Hill, Queensland (December 2013).

Fragrant Fiddle Wood Tree on Dornoch Terrace, Highgate Hill (January 2014).

Fragrant Fiddle Wood Trees on Dornoch Terrace, Highgate Hill, Queensland (January 2014).

Such electric colours!

All photos by Christina Waterson.