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A combination of slow radio, artisanal craft and poignant personal stories, getting under the skin of practitioners to learn why they've decided to practise rare and unusual crafts

We have become divorced from physicality. Technology detaches us from touch and provenance. This, in part, has contributed to the boom in artisanal crafts. It's a call back to more tactile experiences. We're learning to craft, to forage, to paint, to build; gravitating towards skills which can replace some of the sensory connections from which we've disengaged. We want to literally get our hands dirty!

Living National Treasures seeks to represent this societal shift. This series is about celebrating existing ability and drawing attention to our own Living National Treasures.

Ieuan Rees is a 79 year old Welsh calligraphy slate carver. Ieuan grew up in Tumble where his father was a coal miner at the Ammanford colliery. His slate carving studio is in the old mining building where his father and other miners used to get ready to go down the mine and wash when they returned. Despite the fact Ieuan's work is in most cathedrals around the UK his father was most proud of the fact that he worked in the old mining building. Ieuan has been working at his craft all his life and continues to design and carve headstones in Welsh slate for people around the world.

While the Living National Treasure tradition began in Japan - where they also commend buildings and monuments as 'National Treasures' - the celebratory trend has now been adopted by France, Thailand, South Korea and Romania. Living National Treasures are defined as people who possess a high degree of knowledge and skill in a culturally significant craft.

Living National Treasures is a combination of slow radio, artisanal craft and poignant personal stories. We get under the skin of practitioners, learning why they've chosen rare and unusual crafts.

Produced by Kate Bissell

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14 minutes

Last on

Sun 6 Sep 2020 14:45

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  • Sun 6 Sep 2020 14:45