The word "craft" has historically been more closely related to domestic chores than fine art practice. Regarded as women's work embroidery, sewing or knitting where were practical skills for the home and family; excluded from the sphere of art history. If women were lucky enough to gain an art education and gain access to the "finer arts" of painting and sculpture often they were only ever considered hobbyists. Whilst textile and decorative arts were not considered as equal in skill or value to the works of the male master painters.
Now traditionally female crafts have undergone a revolution. Today women and men are expressing their artist's skills through embroidery, knitting and sewing on an even footing to the traditional fine arts. Furthermore, artworks created using craft skills are often political, offering contemporary social critique: Craftivism is a huge art movement of creating activist projects through craft.
This exhibition explores the past and present of craft-based contemporary art; considering and how we can rewrite women's stories in art history by re-evaluating the significance of craft-based artworks and celebrating the new forms of contemporary engagement with craft techniques. The programme will also include opportunities for audiences to learn traditional and contemporary applications of craft
Craft is supported by Arts Council England and Gateshead Council.
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Phone 0191 691 0203