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How Crafts Matter: Mapping the Terrain of Crafts Study


How Crafts Matter: Mapping the Terrain of Crafts Study

Landry, Wendy (2011) How Crafts Matter: Mapping the Terrain of Crafts Study. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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Crafts in Canada have persisted and grown over the past century, despite being marginalised by industrialism and globalism. Crafts practice and the education of craftspeople has matured into a broad, expressive, cultural phenomenon. This has been accompanied by the blossoming of scholarship directed at illuminating the essential and distinctive character of crafts practices and objects. This growth has been supported in part by the relationship of crafts to creative visual arts production in the realms of fine arts and design. However, assimilation into the category of visual arts has distorted how crafts activity is understood, valued, and taught. In crafts degree programmes in Canada’s four independent visual arts schools, the legitimate interests of craftspeople in the particular character, challenges, and import of their practices has been undermined by a dominant visual arts paradigm that has imposed ill-fitting curricula structures based on flawed underlying assumptions about crafts as a contemporary art form.
This thesis examines the literature pertaining to crafts and its scholarship. It also provides a valuable portrayal of the historical and current situation of post-secondary professional crafts education at the degree level in the four Canadian art schools offering Bachelor degree in crafts education—Emily Carr University of Art and Design, Alberta College of Art and Design, Ontario College of Art and Design University, and Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University. It then offers a practitioner’s perspective of the crafts world and the nature of crafting activity and creation. Finally it makes an impassioned plea for more concerted efforts to develop crafts scholars and scholarship, and for a well-grounded theoretical basis on which to base an appropriate craft education system tailored to the concerns of the contemporary crafts world. To further this goal, it proposes a framework based on material culture approaches to foster discussion and guide future developments and improvements in crafts education.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Humanities: Interdisciplinary Studies
Concordia University > Research Units > Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in Society and Culture
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Landry, Wendy
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Date:16 January 2011
Thesis Supervisor(s):Mullen, Cathy
Keywords:crafts, crafts education, art education, fine art, visual arts, visual arts schools
ID Code:7051
Deposited On:13 Jun 2011 13:58
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:30
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