Radiant Pavilion 2021 shows the potential of Contemporary Jewellery and Objects in a biennial

A celebration of contemporary jewellery and objects, Radiant Pavilion 2021 brings together local and international artists for an exciting and diverse range of events, from the 4-12 September 2021, in venues across Melbourne.

This is the biggest Biennial of its kind in the southern hemisphere.

Melbourne has a thriving hub of contemporary jewellery makers. With a rich tradition and comprehensive offering, it is home to a diverse and generous community of artists, galleries and studios.

Director Chloë Powell has curated an innovative and exciting program that focuses on the best contemporary jewellery and objects. There will be street works, exhibitions, performances, installations, artist talks, masterclasses and open studios.

"Featuring over 200 local and international artists and more than 50 events, the 2021 Radiant Pavilion program is testament to the tenacity and creativity of makers across the contemporary jewellery and object field. The projects explore a wide range of themes, from the digital to the domestic, the geological to geopolitical. Collectively, they reveal a community that, far from being on its knees, has honed its skills, found new ways to connect and collaborate and forged a deeply considered engagement with, and expression of, our human experience in this moment", says Chloë Powell.

Some of the highlights from the Biennial include:

Blak Jewellery - Finding Past, Linking Present

Koorie Heritage Trust, 4 September – 14 November

Artists: Ange Jeffery (Wiradjuri), Aunty Beverley Meldrum (Wirangu, Kokatha), Cassie Leatham (Taungurung), Hollie Johnson (Gunaikurnai, Monero Ngarigo), Isobel Morphy-Walsh (Taun Wurrung), Jenna Lee (Larrakia, Wardaman and Karajarri), Kait James (Wadawurrung), Lisa Waup (Gunditjmara and Torres Strait Islander), Sandy Hodge (Lardil), Sharn Geary (Bundjalung) and Aunty Suzanne Connelly (Wiradjuri).

Contemporary jewellery exhibition by 11 Victorian First Nations Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists and designers participating in the first year of the Koorie Heritage Trust’s inaugural Blak Design program. Each are presenting a beautiful range of contemporary jewellery anchored by their connection to culture, Country and family.


Online, 26 August – 12 September

Artist: Dana Falcini

Engulfed by the current state of chaos in the world, unsure how to process it all, Cornucopia’ is a visual diary absorbing and recording the rhythm of the topsy-turvy times in which we find ourselves. Suspended in the liminal space between what was and what might come, this selection of work unravels a myriad of emotions, investigating and reflecting a personal sense of wonder, darkness, and intrigue.

Fear & Preciousness

Online, 26 August – 11 September

Artist: Samantha Dennis

Fear & Preciousness features new and experimental jewellery objects by Samantha Dennis, an early career artist based in lutruwita (Tasmania). The artist looks to simultaneously examine the beautiful, otherworldly form of insects and the common negative responses people have towards them.

Finding Found – Tick Tock

Various locations, 4-12 September

Artist: Becky Bliss

People are invited to keep a badge if they find one. Each badge has a decade date on the back which represents the average temperatures over that time. As a result of the change in global temperatures, sea level rise began around the start of the 20th century. Globally, sea level has risen an average 200mm, or 2mm per year. Conservative estimates of long-term projections is that each degree (C) of temperature rise triggers a sea level rise of approximately a metre. Heating from climate pollution has already caused “unprecedented” hot spells, heavier rain, flash flooding, devastating firesand deadly, record-breaking heat.

Mygration, Yourgration, Ourgration

Brunswick Street Gallery, 26 August – 12 September

Artist: Laura Deakin

As the child of a foreigner, I was taught about those subtle differences from home we long for in a new place. The bread is different, the smells, the tastes and the sounds are different. As we experience new things, we develop a greater understanding of who we are, and we appreciate where we have come from.

Pour Me Out

Studio Ingot, Fitzroy, 2 – 12 September

Artist: Jane Frances Reilly

An exhibition of re-purposed vessels by Jane Frances Reilly, focused on domesticity and the rituals of tea service and human connection. Pour me Out is an exploration of the teapot as a vessel of warmth and nurture, of bringing people together. To have a cuppa, is a bond of human connection and love. Jane subverts the traditional rituals by curating, ordering and reinventing recognisable forms with a painterly eye. She poetically creates a landscape of shape and form that departs from the teapot’s original utilitarian purpose.

Urban Fabric

Online, 4-12 September

Artist: Katrina Tyler

Urban Fabric is an online photographic presentation of temporary, outdoor, wall based, site specific interventions of small wearable and sculptural pieces into Melbourne’s CBD. Blurring the boundary between aesthetics of high craft and functional minimalism, and exploring opposing notions of camouflage and high visibility, the pieces reflect the nature of our place within urban space and how Covid has informed how we define ourselves and relate as individuals during this time. Introvert/extrovert, essential/non-essential, positive/negative, vaccinated/unvaccinated are terms that have come to the fore, and have many questioning their place and purpose in this new paradigm.


Online, 8 – 25 September

Artists: Gaia Maria Walicka, Nao Hirata, Aphra Cheesman, Jennifer Sun Baulch

A project that has grown in response to a world that feels increasingly polarised, bordered and individualistic, further revealed in the accumulation of events of 2020. It is in reaction to the deeply ingrained dualistic modes of thinking in which our society has been organised. This has engendered a conscious prompt for us to continue to explore themes of interconnection and the spaces that exist in-between, seeking ways in which to bridge the divided.


BSIDE Gallery, 6 – 12 September

Artist: Claire McArdle

The act of making is taken to the streets in a performative walking exploration of tool use in the contemporary jewellery and object field. Frequently, the act of making is left obscured, with only the finished object being available to general view. These often-unobserved actions, shrouded in the mysteries of the solitary studio or small-scale workshop, are examined, and reinterpreted into performative tools. The static studio space is inverted, with the work performed while walking in the open streets of Melbourne. With a focus on the act of making through tool use in contemporary and jewellery practice, this work originates from a series of interviews of Melbourne jewellery and object makers about their most precious tool.

Wear Worn

Tessuti, 4 – 12 September

Artists: Ruby Aitchison and Lindy McSwan

Wear Worn reflects on the material properties of steel and the way it oxidises and generates rust. Attraction to rust has inspired the artists to evoke and utilise it, considering how it can exist and be worn as a jewellery object, and the relationship this has to the fabric of a handmade garment. Garments will be displayed, and also worn to various events throughout Radiant Pavilion, carrying and holding jewellery, signifying the way jewellery is worn and integrated with clothing in everyday life. Jewellery worn on garments, will overlap and interweave with imagery digitally printed upon the fabric.

See the full list of events and details at their website here and don't miss out on these spectacular art events this September!


Radiant Pavilion 2021

Dates: 4 - 12 September 2021

Location: multiple venues across Melbourne or online

Cost: most events are free

Radiant Pavilion Website