Friday, January 13, 2012

Modern stone age II

A while back I posted about making "stone" tools out of modern materials. While those skilled at doing this are a small crowd, I'm far from unique in having this skill and I'm certainly not among the elite with regard to making clever objects.

In our modern context it's useful mainly as art, an interesting hobby or possibly a survival skill.
With regard to art, I do have two in depth projects going on and some great ideas I'd like to explore. I also feel a small responsibility to preserve the skill for future generations. Making stone tools is something most if not all human cultures share in common at some point in their history and it shouldn't simply be something hanging in a museum or gracing the curio cabinets of collectors.

As you can see from the photo I had a little helper, who had instigated the project by asking if the glass was sharp enough to cut things and if not could we make it sharp. Yes and yes! It was fantastic to see a four year old interested in this subject, both attempting to make her own tools and then using the one I made to cut paper, cloth and leaves before using it to peal bark from a stick. She eventually decided we should give it to a street performer "so he can make some shoes". I guess that's what you get when you hang out barefoot playing bongos in San Francisco. Anyway, I was pleased she thought the glass knife was better than money and that she decided to give it to someone she thought needed it.

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