Resonant Thoughts: Deckle Edge’s “Cræft: An Inquiry Into the Origins and True Meaning of Traditional Crafts

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“Against a rising tide of automation and increasing digital complexity, we are becoming further divorced from the very thing that defines us: we are makers, crafters of things. When our lives once comprised an almost unbroken chain of movements and actions as we interacted physically with the material requirements of our existence, today we stare at screens and we press buttons. When we made things, we accumulated a certain kind of knowledge, we had an awareness and an understanding of how materials worked and how the human form has evolved to create from them. With the severance of this ability we’re in danger of losing touch with a knowledge base that allows us to convert raw materials into useful objects, a hand-eye-head-heart-body co-ordination that furnishes us with a meaningful understanding of the materiality of our world. Some people call this knowledge know-how to distinguish it from formal knowledge, the knowledge of principles. But you could call it cræft.
It is a wisdom that furnishes the practitioner with a certain power.”

“We must never lose sight of the fact that the most intelligently designed, the most versatile and the most complex piece of kit we have at our disposal is our own body.”

– Deckle Edge, Cræft (2018), pp. 22, 24.

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