Sunday, April 8, 2018

Wickery & Sieglinde Karl-Spence & Launceston

secret places 
 a collaborative project with funding from Contemporary Art Services Tasmania and a Pat Corrigan Artists Grant – and supported and assisted by Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston. Kate Hamilton – photographer Sieglinde Karl – artworks Ron Nagorcka – music Hazel Smith – performance text 

Artist Statement Secret Places grew out of discussions with Hazel Smith concerning secret sites, hidden knowledge, invisible forces, psychological states of mind, ancient cultures and mythology. My own work was also informed by reading Carl Jung and Mircea Eliade, Overlay by Lucy Lippard, Dreaming with Open Eyes by Michael Tucker and Women who Run with the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes. Further inspiration was gleaned from contemplating the metamorphosis of butterflies and cicadas, and visits to ancient Aboriginal sites in Tasmania. These were the threads that were incorporated into the Casuarina Woman, interwoven with my own metamorphosis through the crises of middle life and a process of reconciliation with my German background.... click here to read more

 click on an image to enlarge

1990 Transfigured Spirits

Saturday, April 7, 2018

No Words Required

An Internet Gleaning

While this image doesn't tell us all that much about wickery in Launceston or Tasmania it does speak rather loudly of another time and another place,... Sweden apparently and pre WW1 possibly. 

The image poses a question or two about this maker's(?) social status. For instance, if this man was the maker of this wickery, was he dressed-up to pose. If so, for what purpose?

Was his life comparable to 'wickery makers' of his time in other places. Did this photograph have a purpose other than say a postcard?

Wickery, along with other cultural production traveled across various borders but nonetheless it spoke of it's origins. Currently, images such as this are somewhat careless of borders and the cultural landscapes they infer exists, or existed, elsewhere. They travel at the speed of light and they will not always make sense everywhere they turn up.

It is unsurprising that this image poses the questions that it does!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Noah's Wickery Coricle

Wickery & Mysteries

There is quite a bit that is not known about this image. Firstly, the WICKERYbowl is a great gift from a friend but that's how it'll always be known perhaps. The apples in it, well there were supposed to be three varieties grafted to the tree it grew on but it turned out that there is just the one and nobody knows what it is called - it tastes good and cooks well however

The apples taste very good and this season the tree has sent up some long 'rods' that might just find their way into a 'bit of wicvkery' but what it will look like ... that' a mystery! 

But there is no mystery about it being useful and a talking point just sitting there holding stuff that needs holding from time to time.

Then there is less of a mystery about the mats. They were made in Pavenham,  Bedfordshire UK, by 'Mrs. Morgan' (AKA Pamela Morgan) in 1972 from English 'soft rush'. They have been in regular use since then. 

Mrs Morgan revived Pavenham's 'rushwork' in 1946 after the war. However, her passing is a mystery yet Bedfordshire's 17th C rushwork wickery heritage lives on. So there we go!

Monday, April 2, 2018

Chinese Wickery Using Banana Fibre

Here are some Chinese banana fibre boxes. Kay remembers that the people who cut the banana trees/stools down came into the factory and then became the work force for box making. One of the boxes was exported to Japan to be used as a take-a-way lunch box for the everyday work force – probably making Honda cars with lots of plastic trims. Why not banana dash boards on bamboo chassis?.

SEE THESE ... More on banana fibre:


IMAGES COURTESY Chris & Kay Harmen Tasmania from their 2015 visit to China and the town where Chris was born. The photos are from January 2015 in the factory Zhangzhou, Fujian Province, China. The two blonde-haired women in the photos are Chris’s sisters from the UK who joined Chris & Kay in HK for the 4-week journey into China, particularly to their birth places – Chris in Xiamen and the two girls in Zhangzhou.

 click on an image to enlarge
  click on an image to enlarge
 click on an image to enlarge
  click on an image to enlarge
  click on an image to enlarge
  click on an image to enlarge
  click on an image to enlarge


Friday, March 30, 2018

Mat Weaving on The Mekong

Click on an image to enlarge
Click on an image to enlarge

FACEbook is spreading all kinds of messages all the time and increasingly globally. There are always messages to be taken away

But look at all the plastic hanging about here! The weaving is great and it probably gets a good price away from the Mekong as it should since it probably will not be adding to the RUBBISHraft in the PACIFIC or somewhere else?!

Thursday, March 29, 2018


From Rex Greeno presented a paper on his canoes the nawi Conference – 30 May - 1 June 2012 ... "Rex Greeno was born on Flinders Island, the largest island in the Furneaux Islands, a group of islands off the north east coast of Tasmania. He grew up at Lady Barron, a small fishing village on the southern end of the island. Rex has explored the making of his cultural heritage through the making of the watercraft used by the Tasmania's Aboriginal people before European contact. ... It is through my maternal grandfather that I have my Aboriginal heritage. So it was inevitable that I would pursue my interest in the early water craft of my Ancestors. I read a book called Friendly Mission. This was George Augustus Robinson's journals of his dealings with the Aboriginal people. He mentioned his experiences of observing the local Aboriginal people building canoes out of certain types of barks."" ... Click here to read Rex's presentation to the CONFERENCE Nawi –  Exploring Australia’s Indigenous watercraft

 A sketch of the canoe found by Peron. Image courtesy of the Museum of Natural History, Le Havre.
Rex Greeno's canoe commissioned by National Museum of Australia
Click here to watch a video and read more 

“We are people of this time and this place. The ningher canoe project was never simply about making a canoe. It has always been about journeys. Journeys of acknowledging deep and profound loss. Journeys about recovery, relationships, healing and struggling to regain control. Of what it takes to make a journey in the hope of becoming whole once more.
Tasmanian Aboriginal people are honoured to feel the love of the broader community as we have undertaken this poignant and important cultural step in recovering our precious culture. There is no failure. A journey is a journey, regardless of its outcome. I see you all here with us on this journey, and I know that this small step we have taken has been successful beyond our wildest dreams, as you are here with us, believing in our commitment to our culture, to this place, and the possibility that we can do important things together.
We built and launched a ningher, a canoe, and for a short time it graced the waters of the Derwent River. For a short time, you saw the passion in our hearts for practicing our culture: right here, right now."  .... Click here to read more 


Norwegian Wickery