Lady spinning some wool at Museum of London’s Create @ Late series, May 2008
An excellent article appeared in the Guardian this week titled Amid the economic rubble, a revolution is being knitted. No it’s not another article stating that knitting is back during the economic crisis. It goes much further than that in positioning the resurgence of craft in a fresh, subtle way. The author, Libby Brooks, argues that four factors – tactility, time, nourishment and egalitarianism – have led to the revival of craft during the recession. Worth a read if you get a chance.
Two publications relating to craft that Brooks mentions in the article are also worth reading:
- Expressive Lives, a collection of essays released by London-based think thank Demos, argues that through culture we find our place in the world; thus, cultural policy should enable citizens to take an active role in shaping their world. One chapter by Sandy Nairne, director of the National Portrait Gallery, pays homage to the egalitarianism of the arts and crafts movement and how that might affect cultural institutions.
- The Craftsman, by prominent sociologist/urban studies professor Richard Sennett, who, through historical, cultural and social lenses, holds that the idea of craftsman extends beyond traditional skilled manual labour. The term craftsman can be applied to the computer programmer, the doctor and the many other people who do a job well for its own sake and employ various tools, materials and skills to do so.