On the Couch with Claire McArdle

Claire McArdle Arts Review On the CouchWho is Claire McArdle?
I’m a contemporary jewellery and object maker and the Co-Founder/Director of Radiant Pavilion, Melbourne Contemporary Jewellery and Object Biennial.

What would you do differently to what you do now?
I like what I’m doing now but perhaps I would change the way I do it. I would like to be more organised, especially in my own practice. Getting work finished well before the deadline, submitting proposals in the first week they’re open. I still hope to achieve these!

Who inspires you and why?
I find inspiration in all the people around me. Some inspire me to work harder, some inspire me to relax more. I take all these inspirations and try to stitch them together into something that makes sense for me.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
At the moment I’m trying to cut back on my impact on the world. Considering the chains of supply of the things I buy and if I really need to buy them. But changing my ways of thinking takes time and there are many stumbles along the way.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Somewhere with trees and birds. There are so many different species of birds here, even in the cities and they all have their own songs. When I’ve travelled overseas I’m always amazed at how few bird songs I hear compared to home.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I like taking people to Heide Museum of Modern Art, but it’s also nice to just stroll the streets and see your city through new eyes. A building that had blended into my daily walk is suddenly alive through new comments and questions.

What are you currently reading?
I’m about to start reading Dark Emu, Black Seeds: Agriculture or Accident? by Bruce Pascoe.

What are you currently listening to?
I listen to a lot of podcasts. They’re great when I’m in the studio. I can listen to voices from around the world. Sometimes it’s frustrating when I’m in the middle of saw piercing a piece and I finish all my usual favourites and then have to go hunting for a new one. But then occasionally I hit a rich vein and have days of slightly obsessive listening.

Happiness is?
Family, friends and making. I get a lot of satisfaction from making things, learning new techniques and solving problems as they arise. But what would any of it be without people to share it with.

What does the future hold for you?
I’ve got a few exhibitions coming up and then I’m hoping to have some time for thinking and experimentation to make some new work.

Featuring 80 events with over 200 local and international artist presenting their work, Radiant Pavilion takes place from 26 August – 3 September 2017 at various venues throughout Melbourne. For more information, visit: www.radiantpavilion.com.au for details.

Image: Claire McArdle (supplied)