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Tales Told Through Craft and Design

Tales Told Through Craft and Design

On 23 February 2024, artisan hosted the opening celebrations for four captivating new exhibitions. Amidst the warm ambiance and palpable excitement, the diverse works of Daniel Agdag, Glen Skien, Jessica Nothdurft, and Jean Bennett were officially unveiled. 

Celebrating the intertwined narratives of art and literature, four distinct yet complementary exhibitions were unveiled at artisan. As Fiona Stager eloquently expressed in her opening speech, stories lie at the heart of these shows, inviting viewers to see themselves and others reflected in diverse mediums.

In the Main Gallery, Daniel Agdag's "The Public Office" beckons the imagination through intricate cardboard sculptures and a captivating stop-motion video. The mundane material is transformed into structural worlds, hotels and vessels afloat, each containing untold tales awaiting the viewer's interpretation. Simultaneously, Glen Skien's "Object Poems" evokes memories and myths through assemblages of collected photographs, papers, and fragments. Like covers of closed books, these pieces prompt us to imagine the stories contained within.

Crossing into the Machinery Street Gallery, Jessica Nothdurft's "Silly Girl" offers a visual autobiography through painting and sculptural works. Her skilled hand, honed through jewellery-making, lends intimate insight into themes of relationships, youth, and the lingering impacts of domestic violence. Nothdurft's powerful representations are at once disquieting and universal - unsettling yet deeply resonant.

Finally, in the newly launched Wonderkarma Room, Jean Bennett's "Touched" summons history and antiquity through textile art and mixed media. As Stager described, Bennett's central sculptural piece invites a literal touch, allowing viewers to handle and connect with the work tactilely. This multi-sensory experience echoes the pleasures of holding and feeling a physical book, rediscovering memories ingrained in material objects.

From Agdag's imagined worlds to Skien's mythological fragments, Nothdurft's autobiographical truths to Bennett's history-steeped textures, these four exhibitions unite diverse artistic voices under a singular narrative thread. Together, they underscore art and literature's intrinsic roles as "mirrors and windows" - avenues for seeing ourselves, exploring other realities, and unleashing the boundless potential of the imagination. Bravos to the artists and curator who have woven this profound tapestry of stories to share.




Opening Event Fiona Stager



Glen Skien opening event


Daniel Agdag + Glen Skien
Jean Bennett
Jessica Nothdurft

Image Credits:
Hero Image: Daniel Agdag, installation view. Photographer Masimba Sasa. 
Daniel Agdag, installation view. Photographer Masimba Sasa. 
Fiona Stager opening speech. Photographer Masimba Sasa.
Glen Skien - OBJECT POEMS: After-Images (detail) 2023/4. Mixed Media installation: Cardboard, found photographs. Dimensions variable
Daniel Agdag - Royce Hotel Building (detail). 2017. 86x18x17cm.

Daniel Agdag - Royce Hotel Building (detail). 2017. 86x18x17cm.
Glen Skien, installation view. Photographer Masimba Sasa.