'Crowded Thresholds', National Design & Craft Gallery, Kilkenny, 10 Aug - 10 Nov 2019

“Of all human activities, creativity comes closest to providing the fulfilment we all hope to get in our lives. Call it full-blast living”. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

From amputated limb jewellery to wearable measurement systems; ‘voluptuously illustrated’ silk scarfs, to Rorschach inkblot textile hangings; derelict angel houses constructed using found materials, to artifacts that suggest new ways of representing the self - Crowded Thresholds is an intriguing group exhibition of established and emerging practitioners, working across different disciplines in applied art, design and visual art.

This thought-provoking exhibition represents the ‘emotional geography’ of the makers, generating a fascinating visual interplay between authentic storytelling and artistic expression, with a sense of playfulness and infectious imagination. A common thread throughout is the artists’ preoccupation with making the invisible, visible and a fundamental interest in traditional processes and materials.

Crowded Thresholds explores effects of the subconscious in the creation and response to objects of material culture. Reflecting on what Freud termed ‘The Uncanny’, the psychological experience of something as strangely familiar, the curator Fiona Mulholland, is interested in how psychoanalytic concepts overlap with the creative process. Bringing together a disparate set of influences from popular culture to the avantgarde; surrealism to realism; social cultural issues to the body at a microscopic level – the exhibition ultimately embraces our humanity.