06 July 2007

The conference concludes

This afternoon, the conference came to end. If you attended we would welcome your comments here on your thoughts and reflections on the event, and how we should take it forward.

To summarise the comments I made in the plenary....

Craft research is too often seen as a poor relation of the 'serious' business of research in design, fine art and the humanities. But the quality, the rigour and the focus of the papers presented at New Craft Future Voices suggests that we have made a breakthrough - which we can build on further. There is significant world-class research being undertaken in craft which we need to disseminate more widely. Personal highlights:
  • Methodological diversity and rigour that demonstrates how far craft research has developed in a short period of time.
  • Discourses around technology that are critically focussed.
  • Socially engaged practices.
  • The DIY/craftism analysis.
  • Ethnographic explorations of craft practices.
  • Creative explorations at the margins of craft - interaction design and industrial applications.
So, what were your highlights? What issues were significant for you? And how do we best exploit and further the positive and engaging dialogue that took place in Dundee? Also, if you have photos you would like to share of the conference, please email them to us and we will post them here.

On a personal level - I hugely valued seeing old friends and colleagues, and meeting new ones. I hope to see you again soon. I know that a number of people will be attending Sandra Alfoldy's conference NeoCraft in Canada in November, which promises to be excellent.

This evening I learned of another opportunity. Fancy Japan? Cumulus Kyoto is an international conference on design that is inviting submissions on craft.

I trust that everyone who attended the conference had a safe journey home, and I look forward to further productive and stimulating encounters with you all.

Conference Ceilidh

The last night of the conference was celebrated with a Ceilidh, with delegates piped in to the Invercarse Ballroom by a piper, then - after dinner - entertained in the traditional Scottish way. However, the dancing styles of our guests was far from traditional.

04 July 2007

Exhibition opening

The Future Voices: Celebrating Diversity exhibition opened this evening at which attended all conference delegates, and other guests.

Curator Sally Moir opened the event:

The conference has started!

The New Craft Future Voices conferences got off to an excellent start this morning at the University of Dundee.

Over one hundred people are attending the event, which has attracted participants from all over the world. The conference kicked off with a challenging and provocative keynote from Paul Greenhalgh, Director and President of the Corcoran in Washington DC. A spirited call for crafts to embrace and champion 'poetry and politics' led into the first of the day's parallel tracks.

Conference and exhibition proceedings are available to purchse online from here.

This evening at 6pm the Future Voices: Celebrating Diversity exhibition opens at the Universithy's Cooper Gallery. Featuring diverse contemporary craft work and research-based practice, that explores the potential future of crafts discipline, its direction and economic opportunities. The exhibition celebrates diversity and will feature the work of 27 practitioners from seven countries, including Australia, Canada, Finland and the United Kingdom.