Tuesday, June 19, 2007


Day of Demonstrations
Originally uploaded by notionnanny
Notion Nanny Day of Demonstrations
May 20, 11 am to 3 pm

This open forum is related to Allison Smith's Notion Nanny exhibition, part of the Berkeley Art Museum's MATRIX series of exhibitions. Originally enacted in Britain, Notion Nanny is a collaborative social project in which Allison Smith takes on the role of an itinerant apprentice traveling through rural and urban areas in search of traditional skills and revolutionary dialogue. The genesis of the project came from Smith's research into the peddler dolls, or "notion nannies," popularly displayed in British and American households during the Victorian era. Traditionally dressed in a red cloak and holding a basket overflowing with miniature crafts, these notion nannies commemorated the disappearing custom of itinerant traders traveling the countryside, peddling their wares. The exhibition will include a re-creation of a life-size peddler doll in the artist's own image, whose basket serves as a repository for the wares made by Smith in her collaboration with local artisans and craftspeople during her travels, and offers up larger metaphors and questions assumed notions about art and craft in contemporary life.


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