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stubrowner

Craftsfolk wanted! Interviews & opinions to the question

“Why is contemporary culture becoming newly aware of and attracted to unique crafted objects of wood as a contrast to industrial produced goods”. [/b] :?: [/code][/quote]no smilies
Penny Outskirts

Welcome Stubrowner. Sounds an interesting question, can you elaborate a little :Dno smilies
mochyn

I think you'll find William Morris has already had to do with this question.no smilies
boisdevie1

Welcome.

You have made an assumption in your question. Can you support your assumption?

For my opinion, people seem to be buying the same old cheap crap as ever.no smilies
stubrowner

Thankyou for your interest

I have observed resurgence in the popularity of hand crafted goods during recent years and want to explore and understand the reasons behind this. I want to find out if traditional values and ethics are in some way installed into crafted objects that makes them a wholesome and natural product rather than just being an inanimate disposable product.
Can these crafted objects actaully increase our quality of life?
Do they promote longevity, and can they help us dematerialize our life style through wabi sabi ideals.
I would like to suggest that morris and the arts and craft movement ideals are currently resurfacing in toadys craft culture in opposition to the current economic and enviromental crises?no smilies
Penny Outskirts

No idea I'm afraidno smilies
Mrs Fiddlesticks

Re: Thankyou for your interest

stubrowner wrote:
I have observed resurgence in the popularity of hand crafted goods during recent years and want to explore and understand the reasons behind this. I want to find out if traditional values and ethics are in some way installed into crafted objects that makes them a wholesome and natural product rather than just being an inanimate disposable product.
Can these crafted objects actaully increase our quality of life?
Do they promote longevity, and can they help us dematerialize our life style through wabi sabi ideals.
I would like to suggest that morris and the arts and craft movement ideals are currently resurfacing in toadys craft culture in opposition to the current economic and enviromental crises?


I think there is a complex answer here.

It could be argued that certain parts of the buying public have always 'got' craftsmen and their wares. County craftsmen's shows are not a new phenomenon afterall.

It could also be argued that perhaps as we start to question and look for authenticity in our food so we start to look wider and question other items.

Thirdly if we look at the example of wooden toys then I would suggest that that is either a) a nostalgic longing of modern parents to recreate the toys they had as children to give to their kids. b) a rejection of the 'disneyfication' of modern childhood with its pink plastic and batteries in everything

I'm not sure it can be proved that having nice wooden stuff improves life necessarily but certainly a less materialistic and disposable attitude to possessions couples with a calmer outlook on life and perhaps an understanding of what it is to be happy (and it aint the latest thing...)no smilies
robin wood

Can I ask where you are coming from? I mean is this academic study? Are you a craft practitioner or buyer? or is it just interesting chat?

If it's the first I would suggest this book as an interesting read, not specificaly on envirnmental/craft issues but on the material culture and the ralation of people to objects.

linky

On a more general level I am not sure that it is new, there is a lot been written on the subject, the culture of craft edited by peter Dormer is good but going back to the 60's David Pye's Nature and Art of workmanship is on most serious craftspeoples bookshelf, Soetsu Yanagi's The unknown Craftsman will appeal from a wabi sabi point of view and is a personal favourite writen in the 30s or 40s. Further back Morris, Ruskin and in the 1830s William Cobbett were champions of the handmade.

Perhaps what is new is as you say the idea of traditional values and ethics being installed in the object. I am sure that most craftspeople myself included would say we put a little part of ourselves into everything we make.

Do they help dematerialize? well if you buy one nicely crafted object instead of 10 cheap ones maybe. if you buy lots of crafty things and pile them up in a collection then not really.

When you talk about today's craft culture what exactly are you talking about?

I am working with a group of friends to create a new traditional crafts organisation since we don't really have a coherent culture or any umbrella body to campaign on our behalf. The crafts council, crafts magazine etc concentrates on "contemporary innovative craft" and then there are a huge number of folk who get great pleasure out of hobby crafts such as beading, painting glass, making pastry hedgehogs etc. All have their place.

PS were we missing a link or something at the end of your first post?no smilies
stubrowner

Thank you both, Mrs Fiddlesticks & Robin Wood for your informative feedback.

Interesting comments concerning, “questioning the authenticity in our foods leading onto other arena’s of our lifestyles”.

Also to answer you Robin, This is part academic study coupled with my professional practice as a traditional boat builder and furniture restorer. These vocations I have been practicing for the last 15yrs (still so much to learn!)

Yes your correct with your recommended readings, however I am aware of these books and have read them over the years, with great delight.
Still I feel the need to delve deeper into your statement about putting a little part of yourself into the product. Could you describe further about how and why you do this. Is for individuality of the product? inbuilt imperfection?, a reflection of a moment? A signature bases? Etc..
The “Craft Culture today” I talk of is an overview of traditional craft in a changing world.
I am very interested in the creation of a new traditional craft organization, could you give me anymore details on this

Kind Regards Stuartno smilies
robin wood

Not sure this is the place for long drawn out interviews, I am happy to answer questions particularly if you can give me an idea of where it is leading, academic? are you doing an MA? or personal research. Maybe best to do via email?

Anyway this is my website where there is lots of info about what I do and why www.robin-wood.co.uk

This video gives a quick soundbite overview of some of my work.

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=JIgElQwMJpY

And ion my blog a little about what we are trying to do with the new organisation.

http://greenwood-carving.blogspot.com/2009/01/campaign-for-traditional-crafts.html

Traditional boatbuilding is something that I would love to see a resurgence of. I heard about a French scheme where each coastal town with a distinctive traditional boat commissioned a new build and they determined to always keep one of each on the water, not by continuing repair but buy building a new one every 25 years so the skills are not lost.

We should have a cobble and a wherry, a lerret and a nobby stc built every few years to keep these skills alive. Surely local businesses would sponsor such a scheme and they could be used to take tourists on trips and promote local history.no smilies
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