From-Hand-to-Hand - Greek Artisans & Craftsmen Rediscovered

  • by XpatAthens
  • Monday, 18 September 2017
From-Hand-to-Hand - Greek Artisans & Craftsmen Rediscovered
There are professions that we thought were lost for long and totally replaced by industry. How many times did you have the chance to meet a saddler, a basket weaver, a sandal maker or a luthier? However, they survive away from the spotlight, because there are still people dedicated to craftsmanship either because they “inherited” it from their ancestors or because they have discovered it and developed it themselves.

Cultural worker and artist curator Laura Bernhardt and photographer Benjamin Tafel have created a project called from-hand-to-hand where they search, they document and they present to us still active craft workshops in Greece and the stories of their protagonists. According to their mission statement “the project examines their situation, their emotional relationship with their profession and their prospects. The result is a series of portraits that show the artisan in relation to his or her profession and the current situation of upheaval”. Here, Greek TV interviews Laura and Benjamin in order to learn what motivated them to initiate this project.

How did from-hand-to-hand start? What gave you the idea to begin?

Benjamin: The initial idea for this project was driven by our personal relationship to Greece. Both of us have been closely linked to Greece since our childhood. Over the last few years we have observed that craft workshops seem to be gradually disappearing. With this project we wanted to draw attention to something that is only sparsely visible.

Laura: And, also the ongoing economic crisis, the negative news about Greece have moved Benjamin and I to take a different perspective. We wanted to focus on the makers. Together we wanted to search for traces of still active craft workshops in Greece. Through dialogues with the craftspeople we wanted to examine their situation and their emotional relationship to their profession, their prospects and desires.

To read this article in full, please visit: Greek TV