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Patricia Poore, Editor of Arts and Crafts Homes Magazine

Arts & Crafts Metalwork

by Patricia Poore on December 2, 2009

in Interiors

Crafting in metal was one focus of Arts & Crafts Homes Winter 2010 issue.

The editor writes:
The American movement is so heavily identified with wood: shingled bungalows, Mission oak, wainscots and beams. And as for the revival, interpretation of the woodwork of Greene and Greene is a movement all its own. Historians like to say that Arts and Crafts died during the Colonial Revival Twenties and was buried by the Depression, to be resurrected only with the renewed interest of collectors during the 1970s. I say that the movement didn’t die entirely during those years; it was kept alive by such fine-woodworkers as Wharton Esherick, George Nakashima, Tage Frid, James Krenov, and Sam Maloof, each exploring Nature + art + craft. Wood was the bridge.

Metalwork, too, is a significant part of the revival, as it was a hundred years ago. Metalwork is sometimes overlooked because, as with hardware, it is often seen as part of something else. Reaching well beyond decorative copper, the work is in bronze and iron—cast and wrought, forged and chiseled. Look for it in the period’s lighting fixtures, fireplaces, clocks, furniture, gardens and streetscapes, and even tiles.

Perhaps what I most appreciate about metalwork is that it transcends “style” because of the inherent qualities of the materials. For example, blacksmithing is blacksmithing, whether the product is an 18th-century rat-tail hinge or a medieval-inspired strap for a Craftsman door. I enjoy the continuum, as when I visit a forge making colonial-era door latches, and recognize the revival of art and craft.

Patricia Poore
Patricia Poore, Editor
10 Harbor Rd., Gloucester, MA 01930

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