You May Confer

What looks like the best conference of the year for those interested in ceramics will take place late October in Bergen National Academy of the Arts, Norway. There they have a wonderful course in Craft Theory and Practice run by Dr Jorunnn Veiteberg. She has put together this conference and has some of the most engaging speakers from all over the world lined up, each followed by some of the most interesting artists practicing today.

Scandinavia has extensive programmes in craft practices – theoretical and practical – in a number of centres in Norway, Sweden and Denmark particularly and as a whole is certainly part of the cutting edge in the world of craft practice today. As wealthy countries (on the whole) with small populations they still offer free or cheaper education at all levels, even to foreign nationals, and place much emphasis on culture so arts and crafts are fostered and financed well. The result has been a great flowering of across-the-board art practices which includes work going on in craft media, particularly ceramics. Bergen has been one of the most important centres for this and they do a great conference usually!

This one is around oppositions between studio and industrial ceramics and whether such a stance still has meaning today? A shift from production to reproduction has taken place with images and patterns from various sources appropriated and digitally manipulated. Mass-produced objects are increasingly used as raw materials changing the relationship between artist and artisan.

The conference focusses on the way these changes influence contemporary making and how they contribute to the unmaking of conventional understanding of craft, and ceramics in particular, today.

If you can get there….GO!


Making or Unmaking?

The Contexts of Contemporary Ceramics

Thursday Oct 27 10.00-18.00

Workshop 1: History Lessons

Glenn Adamson (USA/UK): Ten easy pieces: Postmodernism and the found object

Carol McNicoll (UK): Domestic collage

Richard Slee (UK): The way he is sourcing things

Ezra Shales (USA): The museum as medium-specific muse

Clare Twomey: Manufactured not made

Caroline Slotte (FI): Long exposure

Paul Scott (UK): Willows, windmills and wild roses. Recycling and remediation

Tanya Harrod (UK): Memory work: Craft and art in post-industrial Europe

Exhibitions: Thing Tang Trash. Upcycling in Contemporary Ceramics, Art Museums Bergen/Permanenten (19-21)

Friday Oct 28 9-17

Workshop 2: Object Lessons

Ben Highmore (UK): The poetics of made things

Hans Stofer (CH/UK): ’Biting into a cherry does not prepare you for the stone’

Mònica Gaspar (ES/CH): Craft in its gaseous state: An exhibition report

Andrew Livingstone: The ceramic regurgitant: sustainability and the readymade

Barnaby Barford (UK): Appropriation, narrative and humour

Gitte Jungersen (DK): Place to be lost, materiality and meaning in my work

Jorunn Veiteberg (NO): The Duchamp effect in ceramics

Exhibition openings: Kjell Rylander Rom 8; B.T.2011, Galleri Format (curator: Heidi Bjørgan); Textiles and Photography, Hordaland Art Center (curator: Glenn Adamson); Young and Loving, Gallery S12.

Saturday Oct 29

Workshop 3: Institutional Lessons

Michael Petry (UK): The art of not making: The new artist/artisan relationship

Marek Cecula (PL): Industrial interventions

Anne Britt Ylvisåker (NO): The museum: New potentials

Linda Sormin (CA/USA): Chinese Take-out

Kevin Murrey (AU): The new do-it-themselves ceramics: throwing out the baby with the mud?

Mike Press (UK): Handmade knowledge. The new challenge for craft.

Søren Kjørup (DK): A philosophical perspective: A new history, a new order.

19.00 Dinner, Grand selskapslokaler.








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