Gregory Parsons, whose freelance curatorial work includes commissions at Ruthin Craft Centre in Denbighshire, has with Basketry: Rhythm, Renewal & Reinvention brought together work by around three dozen contemporary basket makers, who span generations and use traditional methods to create woven vessels of strikingly modern appearance, and will give them the showcase they warrant by taking over each of this venue’s three gallery spaces.
Among those showing are Josey Goodin, a Canadian living in England who took up the practise with his father’s encouragement and makes exquisitely curved pieces from ash trees; Ewen Balfour, who specialises in a type of basket from northern Scotland known as a kishie; Clare Revera, who also has work at Cardiff’s Craft In The Bay and grows her own willow in Pembrokeshire; Pip Rice, who got the basketry bug from her previous job styling photos; Alison Dickens, who conversely arrived via work in urban regeneration; and Monmouthshire maker Colette Davies, whose portfolio includes wearable basketry pieces.
The environmental angle of basketry – sourced from the natural world, but as per Revera’s example possible to do sustainably – is also taken into account in what looks to be a deeply thoughtful exhibition.
Ruthin Craft Centre, Sat 25 Sept-Sun 9 Jan. Admission: free. Info: 01824 704774 / www.ruthincraftcentre.org.uk
words NOEL GARDNER
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