Craig McIntosh works not only with the weight of stone, but with the weight of Aotearoa New Zealand's stone carving history; self-aware in interrogating his place in it and asserting its contemporary relevance.
Developed using a combination of reductive and composite techniques, McIntosh's pieces are detailed with mark-making reminiscent of earth or irrigation works that appear as if scoured, or scorched, into the surface of the stone. For McIntosh these works deal with the human framing of the landscape: in particular, the impact of colonial legal structures on indigenous livelihood and land use, and agricultural and extraction industries on the ancient bones of the land. As jewellery objects, these pieces are intended to activate an identification with very tangible, material histories, implicating both wearer and viewer in a responsive relationship to the present. McIntosh's work brings together geological perspectives with hand-wrought knowledge, a formal understanding of craft histories with knowledge gleaned from walking the land, to create an image of place, made of the place, that speaks clearly to its own moment in time.
Elle Louie August, curator, Objectspace, excerpted from her essay Craig McIntosh: Ground Work