1 August - 25 September 2019

GIANTS is a feminist exploration of dress and adornment.

This exhibition challenges our social order that, still in 2019, often places women second to men and points out misogynistic behaviours that reinforce this order. GIANTS suggests dress as a universal, non-verbal and accessible language that can be used as a tool to subvert gender conditioning. 

Just as large and powerful giants possess extraordinary powers, dress can communicate endless meaning. It allows the wearer to establish identity. It is an extension of self, a second-skin and provides physical and emotional protection. Dress can have powerful healing effects when we use it to modify our bodies. It is also an indicator of collective consciousness and a marker for change in our mass mental outlook. 

The diversity of these hand-made wearables and sculptures relates to the multiplicity and complexity of womankind and are made from an assortment of readily available materials such as fibre, wire, recycled tyre inner tubes, yoga-mats and timber. 

As a metaphor for breaking senseless social norms and shifting people’s mindsets these pieces were made using processes of destruction and reassembly. Bright colours and exaggerated proportions emphasise the significance of inhabiting space unapologetically in a social power structure that often demands meekness and compliance.

Through the personal and social meaning imbued in these hand-made objects, GIANTS suggests that social action and change can be achieved through simple means; from the simple act of dress, of putting something on the body.

Isabel Avendano Hazbun

Isabel is a fine-furniture maker and a textile designer. After receiving a Bachelor of Design in Textiles at UNSW Art & Design she went on to study fine-furniture at the Sturt School for Wood. While studying fine-furniture she was simultaneously learning how to weave with master weaver Kay Faulkner. This experience of learning how to work with these materials at the same time had such an influence that the intersection of timber and textiles has become the premise of her practice.

Recently, after years working as a furniture and object maker the intention of her practice has shifted slightly. She is increasingly interested in the idea of using dress and adornment as a readily available platform to discuss gender politics and as a tool to rearrange the value of spaces both physical and social. She believes that the act of dress and the choices we make during that act can be such a ritual, intrinsically tied to our sense of self, our psyche and our relationship with our environment.

Isabel’s designs show extraordinary investment, time and application of skills. The objects she creates are meticulously planned but also instinctual and this combination informs her work.

She is driven by passion and curiosity, material potential, complex techniques and a desire for innovation with respect to craft traditions.

The works in this exhibition are for sale. View the roomsheet here.
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Exhibition Opening Night
Join us for the opening of GIANTS and Living Treasures: Masters of Australian Craft \ Prue Venables.
The exhibitions will be opened by Adrian Collette, CEO, Australia Council for the Arts, 
When: Thursday 1 August 2019, 6 -8pm 
Where: Australian Design Centre 
Free event, RSVP required. Book here

GIANTS: Floor Talk
Meet Isabel and hear her stories of designing and making with diverse materials to a strong feminist agenda. Isabel will talk us through a tour of the exhibition pieces, detailing the theme and processes she followed to create her exquisite work.
When: Saturday 3 August 2019, 11.30am - 12.30pm
Where: Australian Design Centre
Free event, bookings required. Book here
Follow the Facebook event here for updates

GIANTS: Floor Talk 
Last chance to meet Isabel during her exhibition and hear stories of designing and making with diverse materials to a strong feminist agenda. Isabel will talk us through a tour of the exhibition detailing the processes she followed to create her exquisite work.
When: Saturday 21 September 2019, 2pm - 3pm 
Where: Australian Design Centre 
Free event, book here
Follow the Facebook event here for updates

Image (top): Isabel Avendano Hazbun, Goddex, 2019. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

Image (bottom): Isabel Avendano Hazbun, The Mean Reds, 2019. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

Red Isabel Avendano Hazbun