MADISON, N.J. – As an adjunct to the Museum of Early Trades and Crafts’ new permanent exhibit on the history of blacksmithing, the museum is displaying an assortment of works by present-day smiths in its exhibit, “.”
The exhibit, which runs through June 22, features the work of three New Jersey craftspeople – Maegan Crowley, Eric Cuper and Adam Howard – and focuses on the artistic approaches to their iron work.
These blacksmiths are at once artists and craftspeople who mesh modern designs with traditional techniques. Like their early American counterparts, their work includes functional pieces while drawing on current, innovative motifs.
Crowley is the blacksmith-in-residence at Peters Valley Craft Education Center in Layton, N.J. Inspired by soft materials, such as clay, melting wax and flower petals, her work brings an element of motion to her medium.
Cuper is a graduate of Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, one of the few universities in the nation to offer a degree in blacksmithing. Much of Cuper’s work explores water-related themes, featuring a mixture of hand-forged iron and fabricated metal work.
Howard is the resident blacksmith at Red Mill Museum Village in Clinton, N.J. He is among the many blacksmiths who combine their artistic pursuits with custom orders for reproduction pieces, such as cookware for historical reenactors.
The Museum of Early Trades and Crafts is on Main Street at Green Village Road. For information, 973-377-2982, extension 13.