In our world of digital performance and creative careers, is craft still relevant? Do we still need craft? Do we still need to develop our craftspeople in this world of You Tube and Pinterest?
Craft itself is a language of materials and making, it helps us learn the value of things. It can slow us down with focus or energize us with respite. I firmly believe that craft is as relevant today as it ever historically was and in some cases perhaps even more so. Craft is within everyones reach: it is not the hallmark of privilege or culture. We need craft to connect, to make do, to mend.
As an artist AND craftsperson - my work nowadays more often is about craft. I find craft not only supports an idea, it can strip it back to reveal its simplicity and intelligence and remove the artiface that can be found in art - or at least in my art.
In the days of Craft Guilds, makers followed a specific journey - from maker to apprentice to journeyman to master, with an increase in skills and commitment to the craft at each stage. I believe in this journeying through our strengths and I believe the critique/review process inherent in this progress is of value not only in our work but also in our development of self. Today, corporation, collaboration and conflict resolution are even more necessary and these all can be a part of the crafter's journey in their specific field.
I look forward to dialogue with you on these and other topics relating to contemporary craft. Come join our journey.
Here's a selection of web articles relating to the relevance of craft today:
Article in US based Fast Company magazine
Blog from the British Museum
Crafting is Good for Your Brain