Transition at the Ypres 2016 International Blacksmithing Event
Published on 05.09.16
Transition was first exhibited in the Kazematten in Ypres to coincide with Ypres 2016. This ambitious and diverse exhibition made works in response to an open brief. The brief was based around themes of transition relating to the events of The First World War. It was purposely written to encourage a breadth of potential creative responses
Transition was first exhibited in the Kazematten in Ypres to coincide with Ypres 2016. This ambitious and diverse exhibition made works in response to an open brief. The brief was based around themes of transition relating to the events of The First World War. It was purposely written to encourage a breadth of potential creative responses and outcomes. The applicants considered many variations on the theme, including:
the role of the blacksmith in the transition from peace to war to peace
objects in transition – the re-use and re-purposing of First World War objects
landscape in transition – pre- and post- war
human transition – physical/mental and social
community transition – global impact both within the battlefields and in communities of origin
transition within the context of materials and processes.
A final selection of just thirty-five works were chosen by a panel of judges, comprising:
Professor Heiner Zimmermann
Jokum Lind Jensen
Many of the selected artists have strong emotional and cultural connections to the First World War. The evocative works and the diverse artist-makers represented within the exhibition have a truly global breadth, with practitioners originating from Australia, Poland, the UK, Italy, Norway, the US, Russia, Japan, Sweden, Estonia, Germany, Belgium and Canada.
Following Ypres, Transition will be touring various locations within Europe, with the final destination being London in 2018, to coincide with the Armistice centenary celebrations.
Some work was sent to Belgium before the exhibition installation. Ambrose and I bought a lot of the work from the UK to Belgium in a big van and some exhibitors rocked up to the exhibition space with their work as they were either masters, leading a team to complete a panel, or delegates attending the event.
It was Ambrose and I and our team of hard-working, fabulous crew who were responsible for installing the exhibition. We had bought plinths and wished we had bought paint, as we discovered paint is ridiculously expensive in other parts of Europe. We had remembered that the plugs were different, but not all the exhibitors had.
The installation was made significantly more stressful as several artworks had been held by Belgian Customs. I really want to take this opportunity to give a big shout out to all the student crew who worked solidly and tirelessly in good humour, to install and post event to take down the exhibition, and also a big shout out to all the exhibitors, all of whom took time to respond to the brief, generate proposals, make the work and ensure that it arrived. I am delighted to say that the feedback from the exhibition was very positive and that currently several other venues across Europe are hoping to host the exhibition.