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ADC // Obsessed: Compelled to make

A 15-part documentary, photography and art exhibition presenting the work of 15 artists from across Australia delving beyond the finished object, beyond the personality of the maker, into the fundamental conceptual framework of their creations. 

Moving beyond the finished work, this project tells the hidden stories of making, uncovering the artists’ inspirations, day-to-day studio experiences, years of expertise and the joys and frustrations of obsession.

We look at the complexities of their materials and processes, and the realities of their studio routine and unravel what compels each maker to create over the course of their personal career – Why this technique or material? Why that concept? How does the mind of a maker work? This exhibition explores the act of making through the framework of obsession – how it consumes us, carrying us along in its wake, colouring every aspect of our lives. With these professional artists, it is their obsessions, and all the associated angst, failures, breakthroughs and milestones, that feed their productivity and deliver exceptional outcomes. 

Exhibiting artists are Gabriella Bisetto, Lorraine Connelly-Northey, Honor Freeman, Jon Goulder, Kath Inglis, Laura McCusker, Elliat Rich and James B Young (Elbowrkshp), Kate Rohde, Oliver Smith, Vipoo Srivilasa, Tjunkaya Tapaya, Louise Weaver and Liz Williamson.

Curated by: Lisa Cahill and Penny Craswell

Below is a selection of the films, photos, book and 

Liz Williamson is a weaver based in Sydney. Creating woven structures has been a fascination, passion and creative practice for her since taking a weaving course in the late 1970s.

Adelaide-based ceramic artist Honor Freeman is inspired by everyday domesticity in her work. From recreating in clay a lifetime in old, used-up cakes of soap to making Besser Blocks or light switches from the same material, Honor captivates with her faithful reconstructions of the ordinary.

Oliver Smith is acknowledged as an innovative and skilled silversmith he comes, perhaps not coincidentally, from generations of jewellers and metalsmiths, including makers of armour. A deep understanding of metallurgy is pivotal to Oliver’s practice, built on a working knowledge of gold and silver and expanding to encompass toolmaking and particularly the composition and historical use of steel.

Elbowrkshp is the studio of Elliat Rich and James B Young, combining Elliat’s conceptual approach to contemporary design and James’s skills in traditional leatherwork and shoemaking

Gabriella Bisetto has built a career as one of Australia’s prominent glass artists. Gabriella’s obsession is evidenced by her long-term exploration of how glass can be used to visualise and reinterpret the human body’s internal activity as tangible forms in glass.

Obsessed: Compelled to make Tour exhibition touring to 12 venues across Australia, accompanied by a series of films, a limited edition book and a full-length catalogue.

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