Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Handmade Nation

Long-time Seattleite and current Milwaukee resident Faythe Levine just returned from a promotional visit and art auction in Los Angeles. The visit and auction were coordinated to raise money and attention for Levine's new film and book, "Handmade Nation." Faythe, who runs Paper Boat Boutique and Gallery in Milwaukee and coordinates that city's version of the Punk Rock Flea Market, the "Art vs. Craft" fair, is filming and editing a documentary about the swelling wave of independent artists making a living by selling their handmade crafts. The film frames the contemporary craft movement as the bastard offspring of traditional handiwork and punk rock - a genuine alternative to mainstream consumption rather than a lifestyle trend. To date Faythe has spent hundreds of hours filming and interviewing artists, crafters, organizers, critics, curators, cultural theorists and historians at boutiques, studios, galleries and craft fairs and through websites, blogs and online stores. The independently produced and financed documentary is slated for a 2009 festival release.

I'm sorry to have missed the auction on July 19th which featured exquisite work from such artists as Nikki McClure, Dawbis, The Polaroid Kidd and many others. I'm hoping that we can arrange a similar event later this year with the help of the Punk Rock Flea Market. Until then, Faythe has recently posted an 8 minute trailer of her film, available right here.

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