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13 Jan - 4 Mar Shelly Goldsmith Haptic / Tacit

Haptic / Tacit
13th January – 4th March

Old Fire Station 
40 George Street 
Oxford 
OX1 2AQ 

Artistic networks are important; they nurture and support, they create an environment to stimulate ideas and develop practice. But not all networks are equal; the good ones push and challenge you, they keep you on your creative toes and help you stay brave, and the very best make you feel just a bit lucky to be thought good enough to be part of them.

Haptic/Tacit comes from such a network, formed between five makers, and their mentors, from the 2013 cohort of the Crafts Council’s Hothouse programme for emerging makers.

For this exhibition each maker has invited their mentor to show work alongside them, to demonstrate how their continuing dialogue has helped grow individual practices and to document how relationships have continued to flourish. The exhibiting partners are Thomas Appleton and Giles Macdonald, Grant Aston and Bonnie Kemske, Jane Cairns and Annie Turner, Laura Grain and Shelly Goldsmith, Kim Norton and Laura Ellen Bacon.

As a group these makers often work beyond conventional ideas of what contemporary craft is often understood to be. Not dependent upon producing functional products or even, in some cases, permanent objects they are led by ideas, material, methodologies, process, research, site and collections. What they share, and indeed as a network continue to find ways of sharing with each other, is the haptic and tacit knowledge that characterises craft making. The knowledge that the hand and eye comprehends immediately but is difficult to articulate and near impossible to communicate just with words. It is knowledge gained from experience not books and those who hold it are often unaware of its exact nature – ‘they know more than they can tell’. It can only be shared through extended personal contact, in relationship, and through communities of practice, in fact as being part of the kind of network that Haptic/Tacit celebrates.

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