Posts tagged workshop
Stone Fun with Family

A family is held together by those things that their members share with each other. The “giving away” increases the closeness between individuals and tightens the family bonds. Mutual respect grows when a balance of give and take circulates within the tribe.

Read More
A Year in Stone

Once again, dry stone construction has taken me around the seasons. Work that employed the simplest of means culminated in a complexity of projects and events. There were presentations, workshops, consultations and proposals. There were utilitarian constructions, memorials and art installations. There was even a grant awarded and inclusion in a magazine article and a book. The year in stone took me around New England, to other countries and back in time.

Read More
Stone Trust Workshop May 2014

On Friday, the Stone Trust workshop organizer, Jared Flynn, was overjoyed by the prospect of rain for Saturday morning. Having produced many dry stone workshops alongside Dutton Farm Road in Dummerston, Vermont over the past three years he knew what the makings of a classic weekend looked like. It starts out damp and dreary. By noon the rain stops and the orchard view appears in the valley. On Sunday morning pale skies turn blue and Mount Monadnock crowns the horizon line of distant hills. And so it was this year for fifteen stalwart participants. Saturday’s drizzle made way for Sunday’s sun.

Read More
Turtagrø Dry Stone Walling Workshop in Norway

While the Northeast of the USA was sweltering, the weather in the Jotunheimen mountains of Norway was bracing. Cold winds and cloudy skies for the Turtagtrø dry stone walling workshop had me and the participants glad for some vigorous physical activity to stay warm. Of course, for the Norwegians it qualified as mild weather. As Morten gleefully pointed out, “If it’s not snowing, it must be summer!”

Read More
Dry Stone Walling Workshop in Norway

Every baker knows it takes good ingredients to make a tasty pie. Now that plans for the dry stone workshop at Turtagrø, Norway have come together, I can see that our week in July is going to be a fantastic time. We have a beautiful setting, excellent accommodations and an abundance of building stone. All that’s missing are a few more enthusiastic folks to sign up and meet us at Tutagrø. I hope you will be the one who completes the pie!

Read More
A Flash Course in Dry Stone Walling

Paul Bowen brought his Marlboro College sculpture class students to my work site today for a flash course in dry stone walling, and an outdoor "gallery" tour of nearby installations. My normally quiet scene became very lively for an hour as the group practiced building a field-stone retaining wall.

Read More
Environmental Art and Dry Stone Workshop in Newfoundland

Past workshops have sketched a wave on the footprint of a derelict old field wall by establishing a guide frame with rope and artist easels, and bringing stones to points just under the line.  Another group hiked to a remote beach and made a circle of stones on the crest of the high-water mark. It was only a visible as a piece of environmental art from the air. The English Harbour village and coastal cliffs along the famous Skerwink Trail were also viewable from Dave Paddon’s float plane.

Read More
Newfoundland 2-Day Dry Stone Walling Workshop

Each morning a pair of loons fly from the high forest pond behind the house to the wide ocean bay at the bottom of the road. In the evening they make a return flight. They punctuate their daily routines with an intermittent call and response, stuttering laughs that draws me out onto the deck to watch them wing past. This is high entertainment in the TV and internet-free environment I’ve been living in the past two weeks. The radio here is powered by a hand crank. After five minutes of broadcast the signal cuts out and I have to decide if the listening is worth the effort to recharge the battery.

Read More
Summer Dry Stone Walling Workshops in Newfoundland

A collaborative design process culminating in the hands-on creation of a dry stone structure. Instruction in design will include site assessment, 3-D modeling and guide frame set up. Instruction in building with loose stone will include identifying each stone’s best use, applying the four basic principles for strong construction, and practicing safe methods for shifting and lifting stone. One day of the workshop will be devoted to working in nature to create a temporary environmental art piece.

Read More
Dry Stone Wall Workshops at The Stone Trust in Dummerston Vermont

A physically challenging and intellectually stimulating day of group, outdoor activity that’s not a competitive sport? Yes, it’s possible, and happening this spring on the bucolic grounds of Scott Farm, Dummerston, VT. The Stone Trust is offering workshops in the time-honored craft of building dry stone walls. Participants come from all walks of life to develop and sharpen their skill in creating structurally sound, “stone-only” constructions.

Read More
English Harbour Arts Centre Workshops and Stone Maze

The dates have been set for the two English Harbour Arts Centre workshops I will be instructing this coming summer. Five-day and two-day long courses, July 29 - August 2 and August 4 -5, will focus on constructing new dry stone walls on the grounds of the art centre. The finished works will represent pieces of a grand puzzle that EHAC hopes to realize in the near future. The dream is to build a dry stone maze on the majestic headlands of Trinity Bay.

Read More
A Day of Walling in the Woods

Dry stone walling can be defined in its simplest terms as the act of placing one stone on two. But no sooner is that act completed when a much broader world view opens to the stone worker. This understanding was the basis of the one-day workshop held last Saturday in Dummerston, Vermont. Eleven participants from around New England came together to hear talks on forestland and geology, and build dry stone features alongside town hiking trails. Visiting walling instructor and DSWA Mastercraftsman Dave Goulder, from Rosehall, Scotland, joined me in taking the group on an exploration of the local cultural landscape.

Read More
The Fourth Corner is Finished, English Harbour Arts Centre Dry Stone Workshop

My thanks go out to all those who made the stone workshops a success. Community members collected stone by the snowmobile trailer load, or by filling up the back of their Subaru. Members of the Centre’s board of directors promoted the workshop, participated in it and brought baked goods and coffee to fuel progress. For those who dug sod, barrowed stone, nailed together guide frames and crafted the works I’m forever grateful for your toil and alacrity.

Read More
A Stone Lantern - English Harbour Dry Stone Workshop

While other parts of Canada are experiencing record high temperatures, here on the east coast of Newfoundland we go about in wool sweaters and windbreakers. Lightning storms have made quick visits overhead in the nighttime. Strong winds blow intermittently through the day. But always, in the past week, there has been fog. Time stands still when the quality of light remains the same from dawn to dusk. It’s the color of pewter tinged with green from the landscape of meadow grass and spruce forest. And always the mournful moan of the foghorn in the background calling out from the coastal headlands; a sound I don’t so much hear, as feel in my body like the rise and fall of a breath.

Read More
Dry Stone Walling Workshop English Harbour Newfoundland

Since my arrival in English Harbour under clear blue skies three days ago, the fog has crept in and kept our dry stone walling workshop blanketed in degrees of gray. However, the enthusiasm of all six participants has been nothing less than rainbow bright. They started out on Monday brainstorming their way to a design and plan of attack to begin building the first of four corner features for a new fence around the arts centre. On Tuesday they completed a six-sided base for a stone lantern and a short length of retaining wall. Today we’ll keep a watch out for whales. Maybe the three humpbacks that were feeding on capelin in the harbor on Monday will be back.

Read More
Workshop: Art and the Working Landscape: Shaping our Environment Today

Cultivated land is a handmade environment. In centuries past, the face of Newfoundland was shaped by domestic agricultural activity. While many of the stone walls built during those times have lost their stature as fences, their presence remains a defining characteristic of the land. The close attention that farmers paid to their surroundings is comparable to the awareness artists bring to their work. Dry stone construction is a logical medium of expression for an artist working in the landscape.

Read More
Art and the Working Landscape

Cultivated land is a handmade environment. Over the past two centuries, the rural face of Vermont has been shaped by farm life. While the stone walls built during that time have lost their stature as livestock fences, their presence has become a defining characteristic of the land. A dry laid stone wall, that has stood the test of time, is praised for its practicality, durability and craftsmanship. The close attention farmers pay to their surroundings is comparable to the awareness artists bring to their work. As a medium of expression, dry stone construction is a logical choice for an artist working in the landscape.

Read More