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A Critical Reflection on Contemporary Crafts

Dec 22, 2020

Norwegian Crafts’ latest five-part book series edited by André Gali explores the core phenomena that make up the field of contemporary craft.

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Photography By: Kaja Bruskeland

Craft is a contested concept in art history and a vital category through which to understand contemporary art. It is through the art of ‘craft’ that materials, techniques and tools are investigated and their histories explored — thereby reflecting on labour and the politics attached to it, as well as the complexity of the made world we find ourselves in.

Created by Norwegian Crafts, a non-profit organisation founded by the Norwegian Association for Arts and Crafts in 2012, the recently published book series ‘Documents on Contemporary Crafts’ offers a critical reflection on what contemporary craft entails, and seeks to stimulate critical discourse within the field. Split into five volumes — education, materiality, curating, collecting and philosophical aesthetics — the series takes a close look at the core phenomena that make up the field. Ultimately, the series aims to identify and act as building blocks for those navigating through the contemporary craft world today.

Within the 616 pages of this book series, topics range from the art world’s tendencies of deskilling and outsourcing to the craft of exhibition making and New Materialism with personal and professional insights from over thirty contributors. These range from leading craft theorists and curators such as Glenn Adamson (who is also a regular TLmag contributor), Jorunn Veiteberg and Liesbeth den Bestena; a consultant physiological therapist (Margaret Wasz); and emerging voices like Sarah R. Gilbert, Marianne Zamecznik and Stephen Knott.

The box set with the first five books from the series ‘Documents on Contemporary Crafts’ is designed by Yokoland and is published by Norwegian Crafts in collaboration with Arnoldsche Art Publisher. It is available to order here.




norwegian crafts
norwegian crafts

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