Accepted Paper:

Handcrafted objects as keepers of knowledge  

Authors:

Benjamin W. Schulze (ifh Goettingen)
Dorothee Hemme (Göttingen University)
Isabell Blana (Research Institute for Vocational Education in Crafts )
Ann-Kathrin Blankenberg

Paper short abstract:

The organ, often perceived as ‘the queen of instruments’, is a unique object of expertise, in which whole generations of organ builders eternalized themselves. Thus, our transdisciplinary project understands organs as important keepers of knowledge.

Paper long abstract:

The poster will feature results from an interdisciplinary project on the role of embodied and experiential knowledge in craft innovation, represented by the organ example.

In craftsmanship, objects of expertise contain the experiential knowledge of their creators, which cannot be transferred without some effort. The process of transferring knowledge in craftsmanship is handled by expert craftspeople through training institutions such as the examinations for apprentices, journeymen and masters, as well as the years of travel, and many other instruments. Transfer of knowledge is of central importance for the innovation process in craftsmanship: on the basis of existing abilities, craftspeople must adapt their solutions to the current needs of their clients and/or the current interactions of dynamically changing materials, options for processing, functionality, and aesthetics. The identity of the craftsman plays an important role, both for the transfer of knowledge as well as for the process of innovation, as the craftsmen or women pass their knowledge on to someone who will use the knowledge gained in the same profession to earn their livelihood and who will, in turn, pass on their own knowledge to the next generation.

Our project aims to capture the specific experiential knowledge of craftsmanship based on objects fashioned with expertise, and to document that knowledge and the practices in which it is incorporated to make it usable in professional training as well as available to third parties. The project thus is fundamentally interested in processes of innovation.

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POSTERS: Ways of Dwelling: Crisis - Craft - Creativity