Each year in August Adelaide turns into a big art gallery when SALA – The South Australian Living Artist Festival – takes over every conceivable exhibition space in and around town.
Textiles, as a medium has been growing in popularity over the years and in 2016 it matured enough to be given its own category on the program after outgrowing its shared space in the mixed media category.
To ensure that you don’t miss any of the fabulous textile exhibitions this year, I’ve listed them here. Why not make a day or a weekend of it, and see them all.
Event: AATFA Fashion Exhibition
Venue: Art Gallery of South Australia
Description: Showcasing stylish couture designed and created by South Australian category winners from the Apex Australia Teenage Fashion and Arts Festival.
Dates: 21-27 August
Event: Here and Now
Venue: Multicultural Communities Council of SA
Artist(s): Haneen Martin, Sorayya Martin
Dates: 8-25 August
Event: AVIARIUS: concerning birds
Venue: Embroiderers’ Guild of SA Gallery
Artist(s): Members of the Guild
Description: Funky feathered friends rendered in fabulous textile form. Contemporary embroidery takes flight in the exhibition.
Dates: 4-12 August
Event: Goose Island & The Murray
Venue: The Conservatory Garden and Home, Unley
Artist(s): Jules Abbott
Description: This series of textile work is inspired by the various & different ecosystems that comprise the wetlands of the Murray Mouth
Dates: 1-31 August
Event: Felting at Freshfield Farm Studio
Venue: Freshfield Farm Studio. 236C McHarg Creek Rd via Ashbourne
Artist(s): Jennifer Gunson
Description: Art work and felting demonstrations
Dates: 1-30 August
Event: Warp and weft
Venue: Aroona Studio. 99 Gaffney Rd Willunga
Artist(s): Helen Bennetts
Description: Handwoven rugs, scarves, and bands; wool, silk and cotton; hand-dyed and natural. Created in a studio amongst the vines and olives
Dates: 13 August
Event: Beauty, Colour and Texture
Venue: Talunga Estate
Artist(s): Vicki Smith
Description: Vicki Smith uses textiles and threads to capture aspects of nature’s diverse beauty, both minute and vast with emphasis on colour and texture.
Dates: 4-28 August
Venue: The Barker Hotel. Mount Barker
Artist(s): Dianne Downer, Chris Jeffereys, Deirdre Bruen, Rikie Klasson, Janene Overton
Description: Nature plays havoc with our world. The Artists express nature in beauty and disaster using textiles
Dates: 1-31 August
Event: Colours of the Country 111
Venue: Port Pirie Regional Art Gallery
Artist(s): Indigenous artists from the Central Desert region
Description: This collection of Beanies, demonstrates the growth of the Beanie as an art form and highlights works by Indigenous artists from the Central Desert region proudly presented by Artback NT: Arts Development and Touring and The Alice Springs Beanie Festival.
Dates: 14-27 August
Venue: Stump Hill Gallery, McLaren Vale & Fleurieu Visitor Centre.
Artist(s): Chris Beck, Lynette Brown, Jenny Gunson, Lili Haas, Trish Harding, Penny Henschke, Pam Kelly, Sue Lockton, Kaye Oliver, Hilary Bedson, Nolda Beynon, Deborah Cantrill, Gem Congdon, Lyn Coombe, June Faulkner, Alana Gregory, Judy Grey-Gardner, Laima Guscia, Pauline Hunter, Maxine Jones, Bron Lowe, Bev Manthey, Teresa Martin, Sylvia Piddington, Anne Quigley, Liz Regan, Joy Shierlaw, Julie Spry, L.Merea Tsatsaronis, Erica Walker, Pam White, Beth Wiley, Jenny Williams, Victoria Wilkins, Liz Yates.
Description: Class Act Collective and Basketry South Australia have collaborated to interlace a feast of plants, fibres, threads and textiles into a contemporary showcase that will embellish the tapestry of your life. It was as if these two arts evolved to be together, not at all unfamiliar, en-twine-d as one. A vine climbs a trellis coiling itself around a wire, birds weave twigs to form nests, and fingers entwine with green strands of soft grasses.
Dates: July 28 – September 3
Event: Artists in the window
Venue: T’Arts Collective, Gays Arcade
Artist(s): members of T’Arts Collective
Description: Each day members of T’Arts Collective will demonstrate their art practice in our shop window. Come along and meet the artists at work.
Dates: 1-26 August
Event: Around the world and beyond
Venue: Naracoorte Art Gallery
Artist(s): Trevor Smith
Description: A collection of crochet tea cosies by the Crochet King
Dates: 11 August – 17 September
Event: Domestic Arts
Venue: ACE Open, Lion Art Centre
Artist(s): Sera Waters
Description: This exhibition attempts to unravel the complex category labelled as ‘domestic arts’ and the role that it has played in generations of Australian colonial home-making. ‘Domestic Arts’ reimagines the familial home as a site for celebration and critique; and one that questions the ongoing traditions of colonial settling. In doing so, the exhibition reveals the ethical entanglements within otherwise innocuous home-craft, and that these methods of making are rich repositories of inherited knowledge.
Dates: 20 July – 26 August
Event: The Art of Crafts
Venue: Pepper Street Art Centre
Artist(s): Jonathan Bowles, Lynette Branson, Lyndy Danby, Melissa Duncan, Jeninda Fletcher, Julie Frahm, Suzy Gilbert, Melissa Gillespie, Ursula Goetz, William Herkes, David Huntley, Jacqueline Isaacson, Marzena Kaczmarek, Fran Kernich, Jenny Knight, Peter Kroehn, Anne Martin, Julie McCutcheon, Francie Mewett, Mario Niesingh, Christine Pyman, Rima Rowe, Marilyn Saccardo, Moira Simpson, Anthea Smith, Paul Smith, Joan Stratford, Erik Tils, Phyllis Williams, Victoria Yurkova, Jane Alyce Humphreys, Rachel Hare.
Description: An exhibition celebrating the brilliance of craft-workers in our community. Art and craft will be on display by over 30 artists including textiles, jewellery, ceramics/pottery, sculpture, woodwork and more. There is a variety of high-quality jewellery pieces using precious stones and metals, all by accomplished jewellery artists. There will be stunning sculptural pieces crafted from stone, wood, mosaics and metal featured as well. Some of the skilled textiles on display are a must see.
Dates: 1-25 August
Event: Sister Art Presents – A Squabble of Seagulls
Venue: Tarooki Studio, Port Elliott
Artist(s): Sandi Hill, Proo Geddes, Alison Waye, Maggie Lucas
Description: Four artists present works in acrylics, oils, water colours and textiles all blended to create a feast for the senses
Dates: 31 July – 31 August
Event: Soft Spot, Hard Feelings
Venue: Holy Rollers Studio, Prospect
Artist(s): Ray Harris, Anna Horne, Matt Huppatz, Deborah Prior, Carly Snoswell, Min Wong, Lauren Abineri, Thomas Capogreco, Alison Currie, Ray Harris, Pony Horseman, Celeste Juliet, Henry Jock Walker, Winter Witches, Sundari Carmody, Luke Wilcox
Description: Soft Spot, Hard Feelings is an exhibition and performance event, an open exploration of materiality, meaning, emotion, and intention. It brings together diverse Adelaide artists whose chosen materiality may appear either predominantly hard or soft (or a combination) but whose meaning and intention subsists inside, outside, through and around. Joining together things that seem opposing or binary but in actuality our experience lays oscillating, thrusting itself between a soft spot and a hard feeling.
Dates: 1-19 August
Event: A Cabinet of Curiosities
Venue: Emma Hack Gallery
Description: a collection of new, ground-breaking body artworks, porcelain sculpture, embroidered hand prints and textured woven tapestries feature a journey into form and texture. A pop-up gallery, placed in the beautiful Rundle Place level 1 foyer.
Dates: 11 August – 2 September
Event: It’s a Wash
Venue: Lightfoot Eco Store, Port Adelaide
Artist(s): Michelle Jahn
Description: A visual display of water themes, with a mixture of poetry, natural dyes on silk and cotton textiles, ink and paint wax drawings and multimedia. The techniques used to make the artworks are all focused on water conservation and sustainability. There will be wall-hangings of silk cascading down walls and a variety of framed pieces that are sure to delight.
Dates: 11-30 August
Venue: Beltana House
Artist(s): Cheryl Bridgart
Description: Mystery, intrigue and fantasy, you are invited to an inspiring visual experience as Cheryl showcases her latest colourful, loud & playful fine art embroideries, paintings and garments. Taking inspiration from dreams of Venice her meticulously stitched masks form art works representing our individual uniqueness, embracing our vulnerabilities and exposing our personalities, pain, frustration, cultural beliefs, secrets, needs and goals. Don’t hide “Be yourself, everyone else is taken” Oscar Wilde.
Dates: 13-27 August
Venue: Murray Bridge Regional Gallery
Artist(s): India Flint
Description: This exhibition makes reference to deforestation, climate change, the gradual shifting of Goyder’s line and to the changing landscape of the state of South Australia. Works include installations using bones, wild-harvested mud and the detritus of human habitation and farming as well as pieces for the wall using plant dyed cloth and paper. A sound piece created by the artist adds a further dimension.
Dates: 21 July – 27 August
There are several other group- or community-exhibitions that also include some textile work. I’ve only featured the ones that are mainly textiles.
Feel free to give your feedback and impressions of the exhibitions you’ve visited in the comments. For more information on each venue, refer to the SALA Festival program.
*Images from the SALA Program, copyright belongs to the respective photographers.