Jess McCaughey is a Melbourne based textile artist with a very particular penchant for hand crafted animals. Under her label teddybearswednesday she creates incredibly detailed and entirely unique creatures that are impossible not to fall for. In her latest exhibition Getting There currently on show at Ryzanoff Gallery,Albert Park, McCaughey presents 85 'spirit bears' displayed in single file in a quiet migration to destinations unknown. We asked Jess a few quick questions about her process, what informs her making philosophy and what things she's most looking forward to seeing at this years Craft Cubed Festival.
What’s the significance of the handmade to you?
Handmade is my life. It's my passion and my life blood.
If I couldn't make, I'm not sure I would survive. I find it hard when and if I don't do some sort of making in a day. When I go on holiday I always take some sort of making. I even make on my "time off", when not making bears and toys, I knit socks and recently jumpers.
How would you describe your craft community?
Encouraging , supportive, inspiring
What is your earliest craft memory?
The making box in my house growing up as a child. I can't remember never not having one.
What is your philosophy or motto when it comes to creativity?
Embrace the wonky
Where do you go in Melbourne for inspiration?
My studio, my house, around the streets of where I live especially my wild magpie friends.
Wool Baa, Morris and Sons and Luccello, NGV, Craft Vic.
What are you reading OR listening to at the moment?
Listening to Bill Callahan, RRR, the Complete Set of Mermaid Avenue ( Billy Bragg and Wilco) , Abba , Blitzen Trapper, Sufjan Stephens, Reading Margaret Preston, Bind Minds
How would you describe your studio or making environment?
Cosy and lovely at my studio in the Nicholas building shared with fellow artist Victoria Mason.
Messy at my house.
How does good craft make you feel?
What is your dream craft collaboration - if history and geography and money was no barrier?
Making things for Steiff.
What other Craft Cubed events are you excited about?
Darwin Parklands Mini Market
Stories of Us
The Window walk.