An exhibition highlighting treasured moments of personal interaction titled, Want a cuppa?, is on display at Crows Nest Gallery from September 21 to October 16, 2022.

Jennifer Wright’s (Summers) exhibition combines artworks made from tea bags and other reminders of warm conversations. The different elements invite viewers to share experiences and reconnect in an exhibition space that encourages (COVID-safe) personal interaction.

The artist reveals her appreciation of art’s important role in creating more cohesive, connected communities. She is holding two Tea Bag art workshops with Crows Nest QCWA members. Their art will be added to artworks in the exhibition.

Want a cuppa? is the culmination of Wright’s varied professional and personal experiences. She has previously worked with school students to analyse a shopping centre’s waste output while exploring ways to reduce people’s energy and waste footprint.

Across her disparate career, Wright has featured on the TV series Totally Wild as the Junk Lady.

Wright was born in Crows Nest during the Second World War. She particularly loves the Crows Nest Gallery, not just because she was born in the old hospital, but because of the active and cohesive creative community.

As a mature age student at the South Queensland Institute of TAFE, Wright won awards for her timber and sandstone response to family violence with The Boot in 2006 and for a tea bag hanging in 2007.

As a child, Wright enjoyed spending time with her grandmother, who was very skilled at all manner of handicrafts. They crocheted, knitted, embroidered cloths and stencilled velvet cushions. This instilled in Wright an enduring love of making art, particularly from things others would throw away. These skills allow her to use recycled materials to actualise her ideas.

Wright lives in the worker’s cottage that has been in her Summers family for six generations, spanning 98 years. Her grandmother was an active community volunteer and member of the Queensland Country Women’s Association (QCWA), which is celebrating their centenary this year.

In 2012, Wright was awarded a Regional Arts Australia Award for outstanding contribution to the arts in regional Australia.

teabag2webAs president of Arts Council Toowoomba Inc, she drove community-led public art projects, including Avant Garden, the Splashing back mosaic flood marker trail, the Blackboard project: I ♥ Toowoomba because..., and ACT waterways. Wright advocates for place-specific public art that communicates the history and resilience of our community and builds the capacity of local artists.

She is committed to sharing skills and has run many workshops, including Weaving with weeds at the Brisbane EcoScience Precinct, Hampton Festival, the Crows Nest Gallery and other venues.

She enjoyed conducting Tea Bag art workshops at the Curious Arts Festival and the Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery and will be working with the Crows Nest QCWA members to produce art to contribute to this latest exhibition.

Wright has been pivotal to actualising two murals at Grand Central Shopping Centre, including the large Culture Wall in Dent Street and the 2022 permanent NAIDOC mural CHAMPIONS for the FUTURE inside the shopping centre. A drop sheet canvas from the recent mural has been used in an artwork for this exhibition.

The exhibition’s Artist Talk is at 11am on Sunday, September 25.

This is a free event and no bookings are required.

For more information, please visit: Exhibition | Want a Cuppa? Jennifer Wright (Summers) (tr.qld.gov.au)

Enquiries about the exhibition can be directed to Crows Nest Gallery on (07) 4698 1687 or crowsnestart@tr.qld.gov.au 

Crows Nest Gallery, at the corner of the New England Highway and William Street is open from 10.30am to 3.30pm Wednesday to Sunday. It is closed on Monday, Tuesday and public holidays.

Detail:

DETAILS: Jennifer WRIGHT (SUMMERS) / Without you... there is no us 2022 / acrylic paint, lace, tea bags and nylon gloves on canvas / 150 x 300cm / © Jennifer Wright (Summers)