Bridget Kennedy Project Space
The program at 53 Ridge Street, North Sydney supports local artist-run initiatives with a focus on contemporary jewellery, object and visual arts practice.
The artists in residence for 2020 are contemporary jewellery and visual artists Bridget Kennedy (196KB) and Regina Krawets (75KB).
Director, Bridget Kennedy, runs a working studio and retail gallery from the space and presents an opportunity to experience high quality and original contemporary jewellery and object making first-hand.
The project space also reflects the philosophy to develop and support a connected, sustainable and creative community by providing retail opportunities to invited jewellery and object artists. Artists are selected to share their individuality, creative abilities and superior workmanship through an ongoing annual exhibition program with a focus on community activation, workshops and mentoring.
Bridget Kennedy Project Space is open to the public by appointment: www.bridgetkennedy.com.au
The ART JEWELLERY Bank
This exhibition is the seed of an innovative idea by artist Bridget Kennedy, that questions notion of why jewellery, when collected, is often never worn, hidden away from the public eye, as well as highlighting the lack of presence of art jewellery in the collections of Art Banks around the world.
For this exhibition, a number of jewellery artists were invited to submit a statement piece of their own work which will be made available for lease by the broader community, enabling these wearable artworks to be made more accessible. The artists will also be making a small collection of related work available for sale.
The exhibition also speaks to the share economy and participatory/social art, an area Kennedy often explores in her practice. As she explains, “the people who loan out the jewellery will be invited to take a selfie of themselves wearing the work and provide a few notes of their experience. This will then be documented, building up a history of the work and its public interactions”.
Borderland, by Helen Wyatt
Exhibition 1, 24 Oct - 16 Nov 2019
My wearable objects reference places in transition – sites that interface development and nature – edgelands. In the works developed for this exhibition, I have focused my gaze on the western end of Newcastle Harbour. This place comprises wetlands and river islands. It supports five loaders that form the largest coal port in the world but it also shares its site with a nature reserve of significant stands of mangroves and migratory birds. At night, the awesome scale of coal hills, towers, shipping and lights define the landscape. The pieces I have created play with this interface and its seductive structures.
Helen Wyatt sees the potential of the small object for thinking and engagement. Her view is that art objects can leave the gallery and walk out the door into the wider world. They invite the wearer to think about the contemporary world and create the opportunity for conversation with people who encounter the works in public settings. Helen recently completed a Masters of Visual Arts by research at Griffith University’s Queensland College of Arts and is an artist, arts writer and curator of a micro-gallery in Balmain, with a particular interest in promoting contemporary jewellery artists.
A Portrait of North Sydney, by Chloe Waddell
Exhibition 2 - 24 Oct - 16 Nov 2019
‘A Portrait of North Sydney’ represents the latest body of work by Brisbane-based artist Chloë Waddell. Inspired by photos from a 2011 trip to New York, Chloë began creating her cityscapes as a celebration of the often unseen angles in our urban landscapes. She is drawn to the details: straight lines beside circles, tree branches over buildings, little sections of the whole which form a tiny puzzle piece on their own. These mixed media artworks are built through many layers of photo, drawing, painting and collage. This series of work is centered around the beautiful tree-lined streets of North Sydney. Originally from Sydney, Chloë gained her BVA Hons from Sydney College of the Arts in 2005. Since then her work has been regularly exhibited in galleries throughout Australia.
Totes Serious… Who Made my Bag?
by Nicole Robins 26 Sep – 19 Oct 2019
In recent years woven bags have become real ‘it bags’ and we can see a greenwashing aspect to their use in fashion advertising. They have come to signify ethical, handmade, and of course ‘natural’ by their very appearance. At the same time, makers are invisible. These bags are often made in less affluent countries where makers are poorly paid. The clothes accompanying the bags have a brand, a designer and status. The bags themselves are often treated as mere window dressing - yet they are made by extremely skilled artisans.
In the same way as the ethical fashion world is starting to ask - who made my clothes? - this exhibition asks - who made my bag?
Both questions arise from the Fashion Revolution movement, represented by organisations in over 100 countries around the world. In the aftermath of the Rana Plaza disaster in Bangladesh in 2013, Fashion Revolution has campaigned for systemic reform of the fashion industry with a focus on the need for greater transparency in the fashion supply chain. Consumers have more power than they think when it comes to helping artisans and craftspeople to earn a reasonable living from their work.
Image: Nicole Robins
‘Structura’ by Regine Schwarzer 26 Sep – 19 Oct 2019
Regine’s practice underpinned by a continual exploration of the possibilities offered by natural occurrences such as rocks, minerals and landscape formations and by engaging with them in various ways.
I am using minerals and rocks in cut and uncut form. I studied lapidary processes to cut open stones and see what lies hidden inside. I create metal objects to adorn body and space by discovering, deconstructing, assembling and interpreting these shapes and patterns, and engaging and examining their crystalline structure through various metal constructions. My ongoing interest in the colours, shapes and patterns occurring in the environment I live in draws my attention to seed pods, barks and dried plant samples and their
family groupings. I am extending my investigations to plant materials which is now evident in the ensuing works.
Image: Regine Schwarzer
In the Moment, and in the Cabinet (of Curiosities) - by Szilvia Gyorgy 6-29 June 2019
“I want to be truthful to the materials I am working with, and would like the piece to reflect the joy of making. I have always been drawn to the Eastern Sensibilities of traditional and contemporary art, especially ceramic art. As a Westerner my traditions are much closer to the Bauhaus, than anything else.These pieces are telling the tales of enjoying the immediacy of working with clay, while form follows function.” – Szilvia Gyorgy
Salt Experiments- by Tracey Clement 8 May - 1 June 2019
Salt Experiments by Tracey Clement highlights the loss of flora in Australia since colonisation and are the remnants of a four-year-long investigation into the properties of salt and its collision with mild steel. These experiments were conducted in the realm of art, rather than science, but they still offer valuable knowledge. Specifically, they highlight the important fact that nature is a resilient and powerful force that does not do our bidding. I’ve completed my material investigation, but the experiments themselves are ongoing. They continue to react and change without any input from me, an apt and humbling metaphor for our relative insignificance in the greater scheme of things.
Image: Tracey Clement, Salt Experiments (detail), 2017, salt, mild steel, laboratory glass, cotton., dimensions variable. Photo: T. Clement
The Fallen - by Bridget Kennedy 8 May - 1 June 2019
“This series began in response to a personal experience. When my parent’s family home was bought out by a local coal mining company in the Lower Hunter Valley (who were strip-mining the land beneath), part of the agreement was that they must not re-purchase in the area, not disclose the purchase price, and resign from the local progress association. It was also the time of an Australian Federal election campaign. The work explores this time of troubles and the destructive weight we have imposed on our poor planet. By using coal and bitumen, petroleum- based products, instead of diamonds and precious materials, I question our value of precious. Whilst this floor work uses the ‘circling’ of the necklace, the resulting work moves beyond the confines of the body, into the larger 3-dimensional space. It consists of a ‘string’ of 48 of the 159 flora listed as extinct in Australia since white colonization. Although made 10 years ago, it seems nothing much has changed. We have yet more coal and coal seam gas mines that form a blot on our landscape, and possibly more flora have become extinct”.
Image: Bridget Kennedy, The Fallen, 2008, bitumen, plaster, dimensions variable. Photo: B. Kennedy
Bridget Kennedy Project Space/Ridge Street Artist in Residency is a North Sydney Council cultural facility.
For information regarding the Ridge Street Artist in Residence Program contact the Team Leader Arts & Culture on 9936 8100 or email email@example.com
The Ridge Street Artist in Residence Program is a North Sydney Council arts and cultural initiative.