The Victoria and Albert Museum in London England and the BBC have recently collaborated on a series of documentaries that explore various craft traditions within Britain. There is three in this series that deals with woodcraft. The first look at Thomas Chippendale (1718-1789) a cabinet maker whose work is noted for its high standard of craftsmanship and use of Mahogany, he was also the first to publish a directory of his designs which lead to a Chippendale style.
Click here for The extraordinary Thomas Chippendale;
Next in the series deals with Grinling Gibbons (1648-1721) the famous wood carver and sculptor who was known as the ‘kings carver’. His work utilized Lime wood which is close grained and has a lightness that contrasted with the tradition of Oak carving.
Click here for;The Glorious Grinling Gibbons
The final documentary is on the ecclesiastical tradition of wood work within the building of the great medieval churches.
Click here for;The divine craft of carpentry.
One of the things I enjoyed the most from this series was how these traditions where shown being continued into the present with interviews of contemporary wood workers in their shops. They are seen creating reproductions but also using these traditions and interpreting them into the modern world.