I am interested in the nature of craft and those who work with hand tools and simple machines. In the eighteenth Century, the French philosopher Denis Diderot edited the Encyclopédie in which he sought to raise the status of the 'small trades', partly through the extensive use of descriptive illustrations. Since then, painting and photography have in general depicted craft as a noble endeavour engaged in by the less well educated, primarily to underpin established social systems for the benefit of the middle and upper classes. 'Blacksmith' is the first in a series of photographic essays that go beyond the documentary, to re-ignite Diderot's enthusiasm and ideals through the examination of the physicality and materiality of craft.
Gabrielle Farah • Brian Naughton • Kiriya Nishina • Josie Taylor • John Trickey • John Ward • David West •