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another Totem doll and some craft musings

by Sayraphim on September 12, 2008


Firstly, Natalie Kalinova has posted her doll online. You can find Natalie’s Flickr set here. I love this doll, reminds me of being all rugged up against the cold and the wind on a grey winter’s day. This is something that I love about this show, that dolls are so familiar, and the truths they tell are so universal that anyone can come to see the exhibition and recognise and identify so many of the emotions portrayed.

In other news, I was interviewed by the Age yesterday, and they took a bunch of photos, and I was chatting to the reporter about the High Craft/ Low Craft thing and she said “Well, surely intent plays a big part of it.” and I think she’s right, to a degree, but intent is sometimes so difficult to ascertain by looking at the finished product.

In yr 11 and 12 I had an overly emotional art teacher (didn’t we all?) who had spent 10 years giving up smoking and cried at the injustices done to statues we’d never heard of, and I remember her teaching us about an artist one hot afternoon, an artist who made entirely white canvases, maybe Robert Ryman, but I don’t remember specifically who it was. But she explained that it was the intellectual journey that they had gone through that was the important part of the artwork, and the finished product less so. I remember thinking that, without the background, you’d jsut be standing looking and a white canvas going “and?” So context and intent are important parts of understanding an artwork, but sometimes you arn’t going to be able to access those things, and I think an artwork needs to stand alone as well, so that anyone can stand in front of it and understand it.

So back to the High Craft vs Low Craft idea, intent doesn play a part, but it’s not always a readily idenitifable part. So it’s not always going to be helpful in figuring out the benchmark.

So, inwards and upwards, I continue to explore this idea…

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