Archive | philosophy

London riots

Let’s breed a generation and convince them that success is a new pair of trainers and a 50″ plasma tv, bring them up from age 2 to covet material goods and if you can achieve it without having to work hard so much the better, pop stardom, soccer stars, lottery winners this is what we […]

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Marcel Duchamp and a prediction about art and craft

We are approaching a very important centenary in the art world, the creation of Marcel Duchamp’s “fountain”, arguably the most important work of art of the 20th century. Was he taking the piss? and why should craftspeople have any interest in it? The point of fountain was that Duchamp was arguing that aesthetics and skill […]

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is that “the old way” of doing it?

 How often do folk who choose to use hand tools hear this? The implication of course is that there is now a newer, better, faster way and that I am doing it “the old way” just to show how it was done. There is a common misconception about technologies in the Western world, we think […]

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William Morris “The Lesser Arts”

William Morris’ lecture given to the Trades’ Guild of Learning, December 4, 1877It’s a bit slow starting as was the way with Victorian writing but is worth reading beyond the the first few paragraphs. Hereafter I hope in another lecture to have the pleasure of laying before you an historical survey of the lesser, or […]

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vocational vs academic education what do you think?

The Wolf report on vocational education this week set out the way vocational education will change in the UK over the coming years and highlights significant problems in current provision. It also shows how as a nation we have Michael Gove, education secretary, when commisioning the report said“For many years our education system has […]

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What is Sloyd?

All of a sudden I have heard lots of folk talking about “sloyd”. Like “utsushi” in my last post this is a foreign word which has many subtle meanings which are lost in the normal translation simply as “handcraft”. This word I know a little more about though having spent some time in Sweden and […]

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I want to talk a little about simplicity. It is something that has always been important to me but today’s thoughts were set off by a friend Steve Tomlin who carved this spoon. “I tried to get back to simplicity.” I used to collect quotes which inspired me in my reading and write them up […]

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why man creates, a short film by Saul Bass

I just discovered this online and would like to share. I can’t find the whole thing anywhere so there are a couple of clips followed by an interview with the guy who made them.  I particularly like the second short “parable” clip. And here is Saul on making money vs making things beautiful.

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