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BROWNSWORD, Neil (2015) Re-apprenticed. [Artefact]

[img] Video (1. Relic, film output from Re-apprenticed (14.44 mins), 2015/16. Neil Brownsword)
Relic 2016. - Supplemental Material
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2. Re-apprenticed, project context, method, insights.pptx - Supplemental Material
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Abstract or description

Re-apprenticed is a multi-media installation that comprises of a series of film, object and performative works that mediate the complexities of embodied knowledge held by a senior generation of artisans from the North Staffordshire ceramics industry. The skills of china flower maker, copper plate engraver for ceramic print and china painter are deconstructed and arrested in various transitional states to elucidate procedural and material knowledge. Re-apprenticed comprises of a looped film projection of enamel preparation (14.44 mins), taxonomies of component parts that constitute china flower making (dimensions variable) and one of Brownsword’s apprentice copper plate engravings. A live performance of Re-Apprenticed was developed for the V&A’s Raphael Gallery, where near redundant factory know-how was performed alongside treasures of the High Renaissance (30/10/2015).

The project was endorsed by funders including Arts Council England, £15000.00 (2015), British Ceramics Biennial £1500.00 (2015), Bergen Academy of Art and Design £7400.00 (2016). An object-based output Relic from the project was also acquired by the V&A ‘as a significant addition to the Studio Ceramics Collection…that speaks to themes of great relevance to the historic collections’ (2016).

To view films components from this output:
Re-apprenticed with Anthony Chailliner
Re-apprenticed with Jon Gravil

Item Type: Artefact
Additional Information: Additional Information: Re-Apprenticed examines the complexities of craft and material knowledge retained by a senior generation of ex-artisans from North Staffordshire’s ceramic industry. Deemed outmoded or economically unviable for contemporary ceramic manufacture, there currently exists no apprenticeship system to secure the effective transfer of these skills for the future. The endangered practices of the engraver, flower maker and china painter were the focus of Re-apprenticed, whereby Brownsword archived the transmission and acquisition of knowledge via a direct apprenticeship to these artisans. Through methodologies that intersect experimental archaeology, ethnography and artistic practice, Brownsword’s artistic mediation of what was an intergenerational practice, offered unique insights into ‘hidden’ actions that accrue to meet the demands of each craft. Nuances of embodied knowledge, procedural memory and material preparation, were deconstructed into a range of object and filmic works. Deftness of touch, tool use, pace, timing and repetitive action were made tangible, enabling rare access to each craftsperson’s internalized set of rules and operations. By restaging former artisanal practices, Brownsword also opened up important oral testimony to offer insights into recent transitions in the ceramic industry. These have influenced the critical perspectives of prominent scholars, such as Prof. Ezra Shales writing about marginalised industrial skill in his publication, The Shape of Craft (2018). The V&A invited Brownsword to develop the site-specific context of Re-Apprenticed, for their Friday Late program (2618 visits). Alongside these events, research underpinning Re-Apprenticed has been disseminated through; exhibitions at the British Ceramics Biennial 2015 (39,225 visits), Material Languages, New Art Centre, Salisbury, the First Central China Biennale at the Henan Museum in 2016 - curated by Wendy Gers (330,000 visits).
Faculty: School of Creative Arts and Engineering > Art and Design
Depositing User: Neil BROWNSWORD
Date Deposited: 05 Jun 2019 13:55
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2023 13:56
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