Turning Archive 2005

Mike's Ladle

Keith Tompkins
>Mike Schwing posted an interesting and well-done ladle recently....a piece that has spent no time on the lathe. The ladle reminded me of a dilema facing many turners.

We are experiencing a similar trend at the AAW symposiums...pieces are exhibited that have spent little or no time on the lathe.. carved, burned, textured, airbrushed, pierced.... yes...turned, no.

I personally don't have a problem with "wood art"; I am guilty of a few attempts at it myself. I feel we should use all the skills and abilities we have in creating our work.

However, as the pieces of wood art become more and more elaborate, the turned bowl form and hollow form are seemingly viewed as second-class citizens. At several recent symposiums, art pieces received glowing critiques, while skillfully executed bowls and hollow forms were all but ignored.( Many of these carved pieces wouldn't get a second glance at a carving exhibition). Art turners become recognized-name artists while bowl turners struggle to be noticed.

I think there is a place for both wood art and pure turning in the AAW...after all, the wood art trend has its origins in turning. Just give pure turnings, and those who create them, the respect that is due. Any thoughts on the subject?

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