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MASSCLUSIVITY - New models of viable design and craft collaborations in the developing world

Start Date: July 13, 2007, 18:00
End Date: September 9, 2007, 19:00
Event Contact: Patty Johnson
For More Information: http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/noflash/visarts/innovators.php


New models of viable design and craft collaborations in the developing world
Exhibition: July 14 – September 9, 2007
Opening Reception: Friday July 13, 6pm - 9pm
Symposium: Friday September 7, 1pm - 6pm
The idea or trend of massclusivity includes objects that embrace handmade traditions — without the sentimentality of wares mostly produced for the tourist market — and are skillfully designed and made in small batch production, by micro industries creating affordable and appealing objects available to the mass consumer. Respect for the hand-crafted, traditional materials and skills, rigorous design applications and the economic viability of such objects embodies the notion of massclusivity and, in some ways repositions the reverence for the hand-made that was evident in North America's Craft Movement of the 60s and early 70s. In keeping with the philosophy of Patty Johnson's North South Project; an initiative that has fostered partnerships with the African nation of Botswana and Guyana in South America to bring design collections such as woven baskets, lights and garden furniture she produced in the developing worlds to Northern markets, Massclusivity will also present "new models of viable design and craft collaborations in the developing world."
It is important to distinguish these global collaborative projects as completely counter to the cultural imperialism of the past. The work in this exhibition genuinely represents mutual collaboration with local craftspeople, collectives, individuals and governments that promotes respect and appreciation for other cultures. The work highlights the techniques and materials that are unique to each culture and take into consideration the impact that the designs will have on the region's community and economy. In addition to the North South Project; Johnson is working with COFOCE (Guanajuato World Trade Commission) and the Inter-American Development Bank in Guanajuato, Mexico on a project that brings together designers with local potters and furniture makers. Participating in the exhibition and symposium: Rachel MacHenry (CAN) – her work with women's collectives in Nepal; Maham Anjum (Pakistan/UK) her work with a ceramic collective in Sri Lanka; Q'enco – Richelle Sibolboro + Bao Nhan (CAN), their work in Peru for DesignAid and Asociacion de los Artesanos en Tejido Pallay Lloraypu and William Gordon (NY, USA) his recent collaboration in Manila, Philippines.
The phrase espoused by author Louise Schouwenberg in her book on Hella Jongerius, Phaidon Press, 2003 poetically and rather cheekily sums it up — "Manufactured products are now garnished with a sauce of craftsmanship!"
MASSCLUSIVITY curated by: Patty Johnson, Designer Consultant and Melanie Egan, Head of Craft at Harbourfront Centre
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