Group exhibition: Here + Beyond Curated by Lisa Slade
Exhibition Dates: 30 June – 19 August 2007
Where: Newcastle Art Gallery, Newcastle

1_AhnWells_Cozy (2007)
Cozy 2007, detail

Wells is also known for her revival of craft processes, particularly crochet. Works such as Cozy (2007), despite its domestic origins, resists sentimentality. This bed of bricks adorned with brightly coloured crocheted coats proliferate in art history references from Carl Andre’s rectangular configuration of 120 firebricks Equivalent VIII to Faith Wilding’s antidote to minimalism: a crocheted environment known as Womb Room exhibited in the Feminist celebration of craft and femininity. But for Wells these references are less important than the promise and the possibility of a quite revolution where simple materials transform space.

Lisa Slade Here + Beyond Curator Newcastle Region Art Gallery

For the Here + Beyond exhibition catalogue Lisa Slade asks Ahn Wells a question: Do the materials you use reflect a consciousness of place? If so, how?

Ahn Wells answers: Sometimes yes, using soft materials such as wool like I am for ‘cozy bricks’ (working title for the installation of crocheted brick covers for Here + Beyond) it clearly references the home. Using a very ‘domestic’ everyday material such as acrylic wool that you can buy from any department store to make a covering for an object that you use to make a home (ie a brick) there is a clear connection between materials and sense of place. I consciously choose to use this everyday material because it is so easily available to me, mum has supplies of acrylic wool in the home for her use. However in the past, I haven’t been conscious of using materials to reflect a consciousness of place. I have chosen materials because of the way will respond to the process of making and how they will make respond to the gallery space.