Posted 30th August, 2012
An exhibition by Katherine Bowman at e.g.etal
Dates: Monday 17 September – Saturday 29 September
Opening: Thursday 20 September, 6pm – 8pm at e.g.etal
The walls of Katherine Bowman’s studio are lined with dozens of sketchbooks. These books contain decades’ worth of drawings as well as ephemera, images found and clipped from magazines, swathes of watercolour and daubs of glitter, poetry collected and thoughts recorded, ideas pursued and concepts expressed. These books are the documentation of a life of collecting, a life of looking and exploring ways of seeing the world—a life of seeking to understand. For Katherine, this journey finds expression in art and in making. a found thing (the consolation of consolations), Katherine’s first solo exhibition of jewellery in Melbourne in five years, is the articulation of her journey thus far…
We form relationships with the objects we collect. These relationships define and add meaning to our lives. Over time, the jewellery that we collect comes to define who we are and our life’s experiences: its milestones and its fleeting moments, our thoughts and our feelings and our tastes. The rings, earrings, pendants and works on paper in this exhibition express an honesty of process, form and material. They are carefully brought into being to carry meanings both expressed and inexpressible. It is in seeing and in touching these works that we are taken in by them. A tactile relationship is formed and in this the role of the maker becomes immediately but also subtly evident.
a found thing (the consolation of consolations) is made up of seven different bodies of work. Each body explores a slightly different aesthetic, creating the impression of having been collected at different times and from different places; colour, texture and form drawing them all together even as they stand apart.
For Katherine this work is the culmination of years of research and experience. It is about a deep love of making. This work is the work of a collector and a maker and it is about the relationship between these two elements of Katherine’s art.
“Maybe these pieces are just isolated thoughts that somehow found material form. These thoughts are worn and read and have travelled and because of this they are very simple in form. Experience has worn off the unnecessary detail, and what remains is simply a testament to the experiences that formed them.
I have collected my thoughts in this body of work. Often the true intention is obscure, not overtly stated. Often time and experiencing the whole may lead to some sort of revelation. Or not. They are just found things assembled together. Driven by a passion for objects and things and cultures and people and belief systems. Votives whose meaning is written by the wearer. These are my found things: my consolations of consolations.
I have learnt many things in the making. What I have learnt most is that I have a deep love of making things. And that love keeps pushing me forward to greater understanding of objects and things and most of all, people.”