Home is where the heat is

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Community and place are the central focus of Home is where the heat is: studio artist’s exhibition. Held at Canberra Glassworks, the exhibition celebrates this multi-functional centre’s 10th anniversary. Current and former studio residents, staff, students, volunteers and tutors have been invited to create work site-specific to the heritage Kingston Powerhouse building in which Canberra Glassworks is situated.

“Home is a very loaded word that can mean many things to different people: warmth, love, shelter, haven, and personal space to name a few,” says curator Jane Cush. “For Home is where the heat is I asked artists to respond to Canberra Glassworks, a place that is very familiar to them; one where they spend much of their waking time.”

The exhibition will be presented throughout the building, including areas usually closed to visitors.

While the title refers to heat as a vital element of glass making, certain works engage with light within particular pockets of the building, which is absorbed and refracted by the material quality of glass.

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Several artists directly respond to the layered history of the site. Jenni Kemarre Martiniello has created glass vessels that contain lyrical renditions of grass fields in rich green and red tones. Her work refers to the former wetlands of the site which were fertile grounds for the Ngunnawal people. David Paterson is exhibiting a glass negative photograph owned by his father. Taken by Sydney Noble Edwards in the early 1920s it depicts the Kingston Powerhouse dwarfed by the then sparse open environment. Also alluding to the history of the site, in this case farming, John White has created delicate glass hay bales. Elsewhere, Simon Maberley, Sophia Emmett and Ngaio Fitzpatrick draw attention to the environmental implication of the former powerhouse and the continuing use of coal powered electricity in Australia.

A section within Home is where the heat is, curated by Meagan Jones, concentrates on emerging glass artists. In the Canberra Glassworks Engine Room she will present pieces she made with Louis Grant, as well as work by Rose-Mary Faulkner, Lucy Palmer, Nick Adams, and Emeirely Nucifora-Ryan. Palmer has made minimalist sculptures that she calls ‘sky wedges’ whose hues allude to the Canberra sky, while Nick Adams executes a modern take on the ancient murrini process by referencing early video game graphics.

Historical tours will be running 11am on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays for the duration of the exhibition. On 10 November Torchlight Tours will run hourly, 6pm to 9pm.

Home is where the heat is: studio artist’s exhibition
Canberra Glassworks
26 October – 14 January 2018

Zara Sigglekow