Kevin Murray – Curator and Writer

What we make of our world

Trading Tales: Narrative Design in Craft

E-commerce has potential to become a new platform for the traditional stories that have connected us together over milenia. India is leading the way.

Hope’s arrow: The origins of East West Meet

I was in Isfahan for the General Assembly of the World Crafts Council, where I was representing my country of birth, Australia. I had to pay my own way, but I thought this was a unique opportunity to be shown around city claimed to be “half the world”. Looking at the press coverage during the […]

An orchid in the desert – the lacquer journey of Bic Tieu

Catalogue essay for Bic Tieu, Australian artist who was trained in lacquer by Japanese masters.

Craft in Australia: let’s not forget the real value of the handmade

With the possibility of technology taking over our jobs, now is the perfect time to remind ourselves of the value of Australian craft culture, and the beauty of the handmade. In his budget reply speech in May 2015, Bill Shorten claimed that “coding is the literacy of the 21st century.” With the possibility of technology […]

Garland – Craft & Design Asia Pacific

Garland magazine – “the stories behind what we make” – has now been published and can be found here –

Bodies aren’t forever

I shouldn’t be writing this essay. The body as a theme in contemporary jewellery is essentially a feminist issue. All the artists and the curator of this exhibition are women. The patriarchal position of the writer is one that seeks to explain the work, rending its unnerving and rogue elements in rational form. In a […]

Festival of Street Jewellery

A number of contemporary jewellers in Australia and New Zealand are exploring the street as a site of creative expression. While the field has been based on the gallery as a space of artistic endeavour, the street is a more natural abode of jewellery. At the same time, the field of social practice is emerging […]

What to make of 2014

One of the major events of 2014 will be the Golden Jubilee of the World Crafts Council, which will be held in Dongyan, China, 18-22 October. It will be very interesting to see how the Chinese presidency of WCC uses this unique occasion to promote local craftsmanship. One day ‘Made in China’ may be something […]

Happy New Day

Last month I took a walking tour through the old city of Bangalore. Up to that point, Bangalore had seemed a difficult city. Little of the wealth generated by its fabled IT industry seemed to have flowed through to public amenities. And its traditional identity as the ‘garden city’ appeared lost amidst chaotic traffic and […]

A new broom: sweeping changes to folk art in Asia

Sometimes, it’s worth stating the obvious in order not to be so. We’ve come to accept that art is a profession. To become a recognised artist, most need to follow an institutional path. According to art world specialist Peter Hill, ‘the usual route is to attend a university school of art, and there are approximately […]

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