In its third year, Craft Victoria’s annual Craft Cubed festival is going HYBRID – or so the theme suggests. The festival calendar is overflowing with exhibitions and events that mark a departure from traditional notions of craft. No longer art or design’s poor cousin, craft is being reborn into a new, dazzling, experimental bird. Taking centre stage are practices that defy their medium, collaborative projects and lateral design product.
Way out there is Adele Varcoe’s iFOLD installation as part of Craft Victoria’s material exhibition. Entering a black tent, participants are invited to rethink fashion, making a garment for themselves using a technique called ‘Skin Folding’. A little less The Emperor’s New Clothes is the exhibition I’ll Show You My Craft If You Show Me Yours, which showcases an intergalactic gown made from hundreds of metres of gold-plated chain from collaborators Alexi Freeman and jeweller Tessa Blazey.
From fashion conscious to socially conscious fashion, The Social Studio co-presents the dyed silk Magical Tent at Fed Square’s Atrium during the festival. Seriously talented makers from Sudan, Sierra Leone and Afghanistan (to name just a few countries) will run textile and garment making workshops within.
Orbiting around the hubs of Craft Victoria and Fed Square are dozens of satellite exhibitions, events and open studios. Highlights include an exhibition of denim at Mr Kitly, a turn-craft-on-its-head group show F___ your donation at RMIT’s First Site Gallery, as well as an open studio at the Mercator Building.
For those who love tangible, purchasable craft, there’s Craft Hatch. During the festival, the once-monthly market at City Library is moving permanently to 1000 £ Bend and will now feature 30-plus makers and run four times a year.
Craft Cubed runs until September 3.