Our Love and Money issue identified the importance of non-monetary value in what we make. One of the themes emerging from the Garland journey is the value of labour in its own terms, not only as an expression of love but also as a way of thinking and being together. The challenge posed by this bold exhibition by Bridget Kennedy is how we reintroduce this “love” into the capitalist market. How would you convert this artist’s labour into the value of your time?
A Year Of Time 1:30 is the result of a year as “Artist in Residence” at 53 Ridge Street North Sydney. For the last nine years, part of Bridget Kennedy’s art practice has been placed within the gallery or public arena. “Gallery as Practice” has provided an opportunity to observe participation and exchange between jewellery and objects, and the community. The experience of how people interact with the jewellery-object, the values placed on the works and the choices made, has increased a curiosity to explore these ideas further.
A Year Of Time 1:30 is a 3-metre installation of small handheld woven basket-like objects, a physical manifestation of the observation of the passing of one calendar year, highlighting the labour of the handmade. The technique of stitching baskets was specifically chosen as traditionally it is seen as women’s work, and the intensive labour of this craft is poorly valued. A log of the minutes taken to stitch each object was kept, and a small silver disc with these details was stamped and attached to each object, every minute representing 30 minutes of time in a calendar year. Created from natural fibres and recycled plastic bags, primarily sourced from her home environment, the work is process driven, with each object evolving in relation to the previous one. The individual objects can then be “purchased” by exchanging either the equivalent amount of time or in monetary currency, the number of minutes that the buyer considers their own time is worth.
Bridget Kennedy is a contemporary jewellery and installation artist based in Lane Cove and director of Studio 20/17 Project Space. The use of diverse non-precious and organic materials with traditionally precious materials in her exhibition work continues ongoing enquiries into environmental fragility, impermanence, the share economy, choice and value. This extends into her jewellery studio practice, with a focus on ‘remakeries’. Utilising recycled materials, and client’s existing gold and gemstones, she creates new contemporary heirlooms.
Studio 20/17 Project Space
53 Ridge Street North Sydney NSW 2060
+ 61 411 808 274
open tue – sat 11 – 5pm or by appointment.