Oh Craft how you have been slighted and blighted. Branded un-cool since time began, often associated with domesticity, tradition, amateurism and old women with really big earrings who orgasm at the touch of a knitting needle. Well guess what, the word Craft is being reclaimed.
The ‘Noughties’ have already seen Craft gaining R.E.S.P.E.C.T with Grayson Perry winning the Turner prize in 2003 and the invention of new movement Craftivism. Now the V&A have assembled an eclectic mix of 100 mind boggling objects, all examples of the breadth and depth of crafts presence in modern life – and there isn’t a Granny in sight.
The featured objects have been selected to highlight both age old skills and contemporary techniques, from traditional stone walls to machines that can make other machines. Each exhibit demonstrates refined craftsmanship, meticulous control or ingenious application.
This exhibition takes the words obscurity and flamboyancy to dizzy heights, if I heard Gaga herself had curated the show I would not be surprised, for the objects contained could double up as props for her ridiculous videos. For those that thought Craft was mundane – think again. This exhibition has brought fantasies to life; from the King Kong sized gorilla created out of metal coat-hangers that greets you on entrance, to the six-necked electric guitar affectionately known as “The Beast”.
Inside this futuristic cabinet of curiosities resides a feast for your eyes; a hyper-realistic marzipan baby, a life size crochet bear, a ceramic eye patch, a high heeled guitar shoe, an anatomically accurate dissected frog made from Lego and a prosthetic suit for Stephen Hawking?!?!?
There is no set path to follow. Power of Making is intended to encourage exploration and imagination, in the open-ended spirit of the works on display.
Kudos to the curator who has finally made Craft Kool for the Kidz.
Power of Making
6 September 2011 – 2 January 2012A V&A and Crafts Council exhibition