Sunday, 27 April 2008

Patriarchal Plumbing: Diana Raw’s Patriarchal Nightmares

Diana sent these pictures of her work a couple of weeks ago; this seems to be a good moment to post them. Patriarchal Nightmares was the title of an exhibition which formed part of her MA at Sunderland University. She chose plumbing systems as the image of her patriarchal nightmare pictured here in dodgy, unreliable and extremely leaky looking form. The image is particularly apt because of what she describes as its ‘pervasiveness’: it is so commonplace that we often don’t notice it. She considers patriarchy to be a ‘framework of our society’ associated with ‘control’, ‘supply’ and ‘testosterone,’ for which the plumbing is a metaphor. Diana’s taps look unconvinced about their usefulness. The water supply may be an essential service but she clearly doesn’t rate the testosterone.
Your homework this week: Will they be emblematic of Boris Johnson's forthcoming reign as Mayor of London? Discuss.

Feedback from Emma Shaw and Linda Bloomfield.

Big thanks to Emma for being vastly more on the ball than I am. She supplies the link to the relevant page on the Jerwood Foundation website here which informs us of the new and improved ‘non medium-specific’ Jerwood Contemporary Makers which replaces the former Jerwood Prize for the Applied Arts. All the information you need is there, but I couldn’t resist copying the following sentence from their press release:

'They approached a range of makers to apply to take part in the exhibition, asking them to consider the theme of touch.'

Hmmmm. So will the application process always be closed, or were they just overly concerned to keep out the riff raff this year? As to ‘the theme of touch’, am I alone in thinking this sounds like something out of a GCSE coursework project?
The press release is downloadable in full as a pdf from the linked page as is the list of this year's selected makers.

From Linda Bloomfield:

Why should innovation be so important? The Crafts Council are now supporting artists who make finely- crafted art, rather than crafts people who make finely-crafted craft which ordinary people (as opposed to collectors or museums) actually want to buy. I have never had any help from the Crafts Council. I have, however, found Crafts Central (formerly Clerkenwell Green Association) very helpful with business training and opportunities.