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Sunday, 26 August 2018

Open House – The 3rd Tamworth Textile Triennial

I think I'm almost over the jet lag after flying back from the UK this week. It's been a bit of a shocker. My friend Lou has also been overseas and I've been babysitting her car while she's been away. Given today was the last day I had the car, and Maitland is nearly the only place the travelling Tamworth Textile Triennial is showing close to one of the cities I live in, I got on the road and headed north.
Part of the collection of  Noongar Dolls – at left by Marcelle Riley and right by Fatima Drayton.
I've never been to Maitland Gallery before and was surprised by the large, modern space. The 2017 triennial, showing in an upstairs gallery, has been curated by Glen Barkley and "celebrates the open-ended, porous nature of textiles practice today".  None of the artists shown have featured in the triennial before and it was refreshing to see work by Indigenous, multi-cultural and environmental groups among some familiar names.
Detail of 'The New Neighbours' by Meredith Woolnough.
While I was taken with a number the works, I didn't find the exhibition as cohesive or compelling as the second triennial. This may have had something to do with an event that the gallery was setting up in the same space, due to start half an hour after I arrived! Not ideal when you've travelled a distance to see a show. I felt quite rushed, the works had been rearranged somewhat and there were a few that weren't easy to access.
'Devoted Body' by Ema Shin
Centre panel of  'Devoted Body' by Ema Shin
Or maybe it was because all the works were at the very edges of what would be considered 'textile' art. I think I might have found it more satisfying if there were a few more typical textile pieces – there wasn't a lot of cloth to be found!
'Ganbina' by Treahna Hamm
'Ganbina' by Treahna Hamm
In addition to the works I've photographed here,  I really enjoyed Jeanette Stok's 'Inherited Borders' which was Hardanger embroidery made from galvanised wire and the dilly bags made by Carol McGregor – I was so very tempted to touch them.
'Wobbegong Shark' by Ghostnets Australia – Sue Ryan. A collaborative piece to cover the shark during a three-day Indigenous art festival in Queensland.
Has anyone else been to see the show? I'd be interested to hear what others thought.

It's on in Maitland until 14 October followed by:
Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery, Coffs Harbour, NSW: 16 November 2018 to 28 January 2019
Artisan: Queensland Centre for Craft and Design, Brisbane, QLD: 23 Feb to 27 April 2019
Broken Hill Regional Gallery, Broken Hill, NSW: 10 May to 7 July 2019
Murray Bridge Regional Gallery, Murray Bridge, SA: 28 July to 8 September 2019
Jam Factory at Seppeltsfield, Seppeltsfield, SA: 4 October to 24 November 2019
Swan Hill Regional Gallery, Swan Hill, VIC:  6 December 2019 to 26 January 2020
Orange Regional Gallery, Orange, NSW: 8 February to 22 March 2020
Blue Mountains Cultural Centre, Katoomba, NSW: 28 March to 10 May 2020
Bundaberg Regional Gallery, Bundaberg, QLD: 25 June to 23 August 2020

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