London Craftsmanship

The past 1000 years have been busy times for stone carvers in the UK.

My wife and I went to London this past Christmas.  We are both fascinated by the history we saw. 

But I noticed we appreciated it for two totally different reasons.  She was fascinated with the age and beauty of the places we saw. I was amazed at how they were able to get those stoned to the top of the towers with nothing but muscle power.  And the carvings, all by hand!  Can you imagine carving all those stones and statues by hand?  No wonder it took so long to complete those building.

And this is just the back door!

King HenryVIII made about 1000 years ago!

But then what would you rather do?  Make something that can be thrown away in an instant.  Or make something that takes more than a lifetime to complete, and will be appreciated for centuries to come. I think that is the definition of craftsmanship. 

Awhile back my wife and I decided to start replacing all out dinnerware and serving ware with handmade pieces. The search has be great.  No, we cannot afford to just go and buy all new dishes and pottery.  We have been searching high and low to find items which reflect the skill of the craftsman who made them. And hopefully meet those men and women in the process.  Now when we bring a dish to the table it brings with some memory of the time and place where it was crafted, where we purchased it and the person who pored part of her soul into making a piece of art.   

 Art should exhibit some craft. There needs to be a visible quality to the work which reflects a developed skill.

Craftsmanship is something worth developing.  The energy of the craftsman gives soul to his work. Too often we see things made without a soul.  If you know you are creating something which represents the highest limit of your ability, then you are putting part of yourself into the object. 

That is the type of art we saw in the buildings of London and Cambridge.  Art with soul. 

That is the type art we all need to be celebrating …and creating.

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