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Extreme Crafts
Curators: Catherine Hemelryk & Jennie Syson
V. 25 – VIII. 12
Curators: Catherine Hemelryk & Jennie Syson
Organisers: CAC and the British Council

Participants:
Barb Hunt, Cast Off, Catherine Bertola, Claudia Borgna, Daniel Eatock, Egle Bogdanienė, Flash Bar / Mirjam Wirz, Garth Johnson, Hilary Jack, Jan Körbes, Julie Jackson, Juneau/Projects/, Juozas Laivys, Lina Ozerkina, Maija Kurševa, Make, Mark Newport, Rayna Fahey aka Kakariki – Radical Cross Stitch, Sabrina Gschwandtner & Knit Knit, Sonya Scöhnberger, Try 3, Ulrike Solbrig, Via Vaudeville!

In the Rogues Gallery:
Anna Dumitriu, Anneke van Bommel, Bean Gilsdorf, Becca Wilson, Bernadeta Levule, Baroness Carrie von Reichardt, Clémentine Fort, Clôde Coulpier, Derbyshire Well Dressers, Horst Schulz, James Ford, Joan Ainley, Josie Long, Julia Douglas, Kate Pemberton, Nomeda & Gediminas Urbonas, Rüdiger Schlömer, Ruth Claxton, Sandra Straukaitė and many more...
Handicrafts are increasingly being used by artists and designers as a source of inspiration and method of manufacture. Many crafts are experiencing a resurgence in popularity; they are no longer the bastion of elderly ladies, but people from all ages and backgrounds. Punk knitting, origami with an agenda and epic cross-stitch have surged in numbers. In wake of the supposed death of local community, self-organised craft groups such as ‘Stitch and Bitch‘ have flourished in recent times.

Customisation is also experiencing a renaissance. Technology, perceived to be removed and sophisticated, is being re-attached to the user by the democratic ‘anyone-can-make-and-do‘ accessories such as the knitted iPod cover or mobile phone pocket or diamante decoration. And although thrift-store chic is being co-opted by design firms and marketed back to the public, self-organised groups of artists and makers are creating forums for people to do it for themselves. This is demonstrated by those at the peripheries of commercial regions, such as the Favelas of Brazil or the weaving centres of Kumasi famed for making Kente cloth in Ghana. Crafts are thriving in these places and represent a valuable cultural yet marketable contribution to the global economy. Often they reflect the modern technological world through the recycling of its detritus. Bowls are made from telephone wires, bicycles made from circuit boards and cans and coffins are carved in the shapes of Coca Cola bottles or cars. Making continues regardless of circumstance.

Craft creates the connotation of the intimate and handmade. It implies working in hand-sized proportions, but many makers are experimenting with scale. Tiny techniques are blown up and new materials are employed to reinterpret traditional skills on a grand scale. Gestures become bold statements through expansion. In a counter-motion, many makers are also refining their skills to make ever-smaller constructions. Echoing the developments in engineering and nano-technology, the facture of miniatures has proliferated. Objects and entire environments that could sit on the head of a pin test their makers.

Programmes such as Craft Corner Deathmatch and a proliferation of user-groups dedicated to all kinds of craft interests are booming, but why is this happening now and just what constitutes craft - the often maligned place between the art and design? By taking it to the extreme, finding the vanguard, 'Extreme Crafts' presents just a small selection of possible answers to the question: What can contemporary craft be?

'Extreme Crafts' at the Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius takes the form of an international exhibition, events and a ‘things-to-make-and-do‘ catalogue containing essays, patterns and ideas. The exhibition has several sections, from a 'rogue‘s gallery' showing objects and documentation of work being made by self-organised groups and individuals across the globe, to politicised handmade objects. Subverted ideas of national identity as expressed through regional crafts, sitting side-by-side mutated folk traditions and much more. Crucial to 'Extreme Crafts' is not only the product of craft, but the process of crafting: the gallery spaces will be activated by different groups invited to demonstrate their activities and importantly, visitors will be encouraged to participate.


Workshop, performance, participatory events

Friday 25 May
18:00 Official opening of Extreme Crafts, CAC, Vokiečių 2
18:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC
Bring your rubbish and discarded belongings such as furniture to be transformed into something functional and new. Join in the making sessions over the week to find new uses and different ways of looking at your junk. Garbage challenges will also pit the creativity of one maker against another in a contest of invention.

18:30 Sonya Schönberger performance, ToDay – is it? –, Conference Hall CAC
An entire Lithuanian newspaper will be sewn onto fabric over the space of one week. After the week the fabric will be displayed in the CAC galleries.

19:30 Juneau/Projects/, performance with Action Objects, Upper floor CAC
Playing their own hand-crafted instruments, Juneau/Projects/ will perform songs from their EP which can be found in a USB embedded in a cassette.

Undisclosed times on undisclosed dates, Maija Kurševa, Graffitti Office, Vilnius
On the walls of Vilnius Maija Kurševa will work office hours to produce paste-ups and imagery in the street of those working within the city buildings.

Saturday 26 May
12:00–19:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC
12:00–19:30 Sonya Schönberger performance, ToDay – is it? –, Conference Hall CAC

Sunday 27 May
12:00–19:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC
12:00–19:30 Sonya Schönberger performance, ToDay – is it? –, Conference Hall CAC
14:00–16:00 Juneau/Projects/, Bring something and make a musical instrument out of it, South Hall CAC
Make a musical instrument out of something you own. Bring along something, perhaps your favourite walking stick, or a toy and find out how to transform it into something more.

Tuesday 29 May
12:00–19:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC
12:00–19:30 Sonya Schönberger performance, ToDay – is it? –, Conference Hall CAC

Wednesday 30 May
12:00–19:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC
12:00–19:30 Sonya Schönberger performance, ToDay – is it? –, Conference Hall CAC

Thursday 31 May
12:00–19:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC
12:00–19:30 Sonya Schönberger performance, ToDay – is it? –, Conference Hall CAC

Friday 01 June
12:00–19:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC

Saturday 02 June
12:00–19:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC

Sunday 03 June
12:00–19:30 Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC

Tuesday 26 June–Saturday 30 June
Various times, Jan Körbes, refunc garbage challenge, South Hall, front and rear of CAC
Building on from the garbage challenge workshops and demonstrations, Jan Körbes will explore further what can be made from the garbage of Vilnius. Check website for more details.

Saturday 30 June
Mirjam Wirz / Flash Bar
You never know when and where the Flash hits! information will be leaked later.

Saturday 7 July
16:00–onwards Workshow VI, South Hall CAC
Bring you favourite audio files, ingredients and second-hand clothes to remix, concoct and collaborate.

Wednesday 11 July
17:30–19:30 Technology sprucing, South Hall CAC
Bring your laptop, mp3 player or mobile phone to customise your Myspace or website and to make pockets and decorations for your gadgets.

Friday 13 July
17:30–19:30 Cast off, Warm up, Stretch and Cast Off, meet at South Hall CAC
Join the preparations for the knitting marathon and swap and lean new techniques while you are at it. Borrow needles and yarn, or bring your own, to knit things for the Knitting Marathon.

Saturday 14 July
11:00–onwards Cast off, Knitting Marathon, starting at CAC front door, Vokiečių 2
Join in the knitting marathon, knit or crochet while running a route leading from the front door of CAC. Bring needles and yarn, or borrow materials when you arrive. If you don’t fancy running, then join the spectators that will line the route knitting orange slices and medals for the winners!
Gallery
Calendar
SLOB. A talk by Benjamin Thorel at the CAC Reading Room
Šios savaitės renginiai Šiuolaikinio meno centre
A launch of the catalogue of an exhibition 'Martin Ebner, Kitty Kraus' at CAC Reading Room
„Meno avilys“ pristato: šeštasis kino ciklo „Lėtosios peržiūros“ dialogas „Moterys“
Trumpametražių eksperimentinių animacinių filmų programa „Forma T“
Film programme curated by Erik Martinson ‘Portal Atop a Bus Stop’
Archive