Master's programmes


Exhibition: 15—24 May at Konstfack

About CRAFT!

Craft has always had a strong, sometimes underrated, power of formulating resistance. The focus has often come to lie more on the objects that arise from the various actions and transactions of craft, than on craft as a form of knowledge and a way for humans to be in dialogue with their material, physical, and social conditions. The practices of doing that together shape the craft’s “coming into being” and this dynamic dialogue with the materials lays the foundation for a focus on – and responsibility for – our human material-oriented actions. In this emerges a doing-based resistance to the exploitative approach to materials and work that largely characterises today’s global economy.

The different practices of craft suggest a more elastic way of understanding what resistance can be, beyond simplistic notions, often formulated in dualistic terms. The encounter with the material always includes a measure of listening to its intentions and stories about its origins, both colonial and political as well as purely physical and poetic – what can be summarised as material biographies. But even the material itself offers resistance. Different negotiations with the material arise in the craft, where this resistance is transformed into artistic power while still preserving the integrity of both the material and the “doing” human being.

Among this year’s students in CRAFT!, we are offered a variety of deep insights into this material- and action-based resistance. By highlighting the performative in objects and action, and as an artistic method – often also with a large portion of humour – power structures are exposed. Architectural and institutional distinctions vis-à-vis body and individual are dissolved, with material and craft as elastic structures between them. This also creates the opportunity to uncover and materialise memories and experiences otherwise rendered invisible by the institutional need for alignment and demand for belonging. In the craft – in the dialogue with the material – there is therefore also great opportunity for reconciliation and a certain comfort, of which quite a few of the students’ degree projects show fantastic examples.

Anders Ljungberg
Professor in CRAFT! – Jewellery and Corpus