American Craft Forums
American Craft Forums
Come be part of the conversation around craft.
Our free, quarterly American Craft Forums bring our community together to explore new ways of thinking about craft. Tying into the themes of each issue of American Craft, these online discussions feature artists, writers, curators, community organizers, and more—diverse voices working together to move the craft field forward. Join us to gain fresh perspectives from inspiring people and their important projects.
The Violinmaker & The Virtuoso: Craft from the Workshop to the Concert Hall
Thursday, October 5, 2023
At its heart, craft is not a static endeavor. Whether you are working with a team of artists, as with glassblowing, or leaning into the “lone artist toiling in their studio” trope, craft lives and breathes, changes and grows between hands and spaces. When the object leaves the studio it takes on new life for someone else in a new place. For luthier Eric Benning of Benning Violins, craft lives through multiple generations of a family business that makes world-renowned stringed instruments for those just learning and those gracing some of the world’s greatest stages. When Benning completes a violin he doesn’t just hang it on the wall; it’s not decorative. He places that violin in the hands of someone like virtuoso violinist Vijay Gupta, who then uses it to direct his own creative force, his gift, his craft. This object that appears static and still, complete, continues its journey through Gupta’s playing.
Join us for a conversation between these two incredibly talented individuals who share a love of, and connection through, music and the instruments that give that music voice. They will discuss the symbiotic relationship between player and maker, explore ideas around how moments of transition and transformation can lead to great joy, and share the ways music can be employed to help other people. What kind of power and promise is inherent in this craft of making beautiful tools for another type of creative energy and expression?
Watch Recordings of Past Forums
- Summer 2023 | Foragers: Making Connections Between Places and Materials
- Spring 2023 | Woven Through Water: How Boatbuilding Connects Communities and Cultures
- Winter 2023 | Houses Into Homes: How Craft Makes a Difference
- Summer 2022 | Shaping Glass, Shaping Culture: A Conversation With Preston Singletary and Leo Tecosky
- Spring 2022 | MOSAIC: Where Craft and Fashion Meet
- Winter 2022 | Craft Writing Now: Meet the Winners of the Lois Moran Award for Craft Writing
- Fall 2021 | The Secret to Collaboration With Omar Tate and Gregg Moore
- Summer 2021 | Object Stories From the Craftscape
- Spring 2021 | Forward Motion: How Craft Can Help Us Move From a Crisis of Care to a Culture of Care
- May/June 2020 | Craft Thinking
- April 2020 | Innovation in the Face of Adversity
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