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Artists’ Syllabus: Jessie French

Jessie French, Melbourne Art Library

Melbourne Art Library is delighted to welcome Jessie French to lead our next Artists’ Syllabus.

For this Artists’ Syllabus, Jessie will be leading a discussion around Karan Barad’s essay “On Touching: The Inhuman That Therefore I Am.” Jessie will also draw on experience from her own practice.

Artists’ Syllabus invites local artists and designers to select and share a text that has been influential to their practice. By sharing selected passages, the artist will give unique insight into the significance of the text from their perspective. Through this exploration we will seek to discover the direct, tangential or unexpected ways the text has had an impact on the artists’ chosen discipline/s, creative process, and approach to presenting completed works. In group discussion, we will untangle the themes explored in the text and bring attention to those formative passages which sparked an ‘ah-ha moment’ or cemented in the mind. More broadly, we will get together to exchange our ideas (and our reading lists).

Supported by City of Melbourne Arts Grants and Michael Robertson.

Based in Naarm/Melbourne, Australia, the work of Jessie French explores speculative futures through algae-based bioplastic and water-based ecologies. Housed within an ethos of consumption, sustainability and regeneration, her practice invites others to engage with the possibilities of a post-petrochemical world. Through experimenting with other materials, she explores the potential of closed-loop systems of (re)use and conscious consumption and interaction with objects. In 2020, French founded OTHER MATTER, an experimental design studio working with algae-based bioplastics which engages others in the possibilities of new materials though objects, experiences and futures.

Image: Jessie French working with large sheet works in the Other Matter Studio, 2022. Photo: Phillip Huynh

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