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Blacksmith Festivals of Ukraine


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Ivano-Frankivsk 2009
a Boundless Art

The “Blacksmith’s Holiday” festival exceeded the limits of a solely blacksmithing event a long time ago and became one of the holidays which take place in Ivano-Frankivsk, which last 2 weeks and are timed to the May Day, Day of the City and the Victory Day. On May 8-10, 2009, the city once again warmly welcomed the guests of the VII International Blacksmith’s Festival “Blacksmith’s Holiday 2009” organized by the Union of Artist Blacksmiths of Ukraine.

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Ivano-Frankivsk 2009
a Boundless Art

The “Blacksmith’s Holiday” festival exceeded the limits of a solely blacksmithing event a long time ago and became one of the holidays which take place in Ivano-Frankivsk, which last 2 weeks and are timed to the May Day, Day of the City and the Victory Day. On May 8-10, 2009, the city once again warmly welcomed the guests of the VII International Blacksmith’s Festival “Blacksmith’s Holiday 2009” organized by the Union of Artist Blacksmiths of Ukraine.
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World meeting of blacksmiths

The number of guests noticeably exceeded the last year’s meeting. In addition to hundreds of native participants, delegations from more than 20 countries came to the festival: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Belarus, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Israel, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, USA, Uzbekistan, Finland, France, Germany, Sweden and Czech Republic. Among them there were such remarkable people as Richard Quinnell, founder of the British Artist Blacksmiths Association; Nigel Barnett, the BABA Chairman; Pete Oberon, owner of the private school of blacksmithing in Britain; Kate Dinneen, member of the Board of Directors of the Artist-Blacksmith’s Association of North America; Valeriy Galkin, member of the Guild of Blacksmiths and Decorative Metal Artists of St. Petersburg and Northwestern Region; Ferdinando Nava, organizer of the international black¬smithing championship in France; Leonard Czajkowski, founder of the Association of Blacksmiths of Poland; Rodgen Bokshtele, head of the Belgian Association of Blacksmiths; Martina Estardie and Patrick Moli¬nari, representatives of the French Blacksmith’s Association “Salamander”.

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During the festival, the participants joined the “Gum Tree” international project, an initiative of the Australian Blacksmiths Association which makes a sculpture to commemorate the people who died in Australian conflagrations. Many craftsmen brought forged leaves for the tree and gave them to Paul Meals, chief editor of The Drift magazine (representative of the Australian Blacksmiths Association).

There are no obstacles to perfection
It has already become a tradition that the “Blacksmith’s Holiday” is held in the atmosphere of demonstration master classes. This year the public’s special attention was drawn by the master class of ergonomic blacksmithing by Uri Hofi. The craftsman gives his master classes all over the world and is a founder of his own school of blacksmithing in Israel. You never know where you’ll get or lose. Three injured fingers of his right hand resulted in the invention of a new blacksmithing technique by Uri Hofi. It consists in the metal work technique by means of a specially shaped hammer and an anvil smaller than a standard one. During the work, the greater load falls on the hand instead of the forearm. As a result, the forging rate increases and the blacksmith’s strain is relieved.

Exhibitions and presentations chronicle
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The VIII exhibition “Ornamental Blacksmithing” was traditionally held during the festival. It took place in the territory of the regional organization of the National Union of Artists of Ukraine. In addition, spectators and participants could visit the exhibition of sculptures “Our Ivano-Frankivsk” of the “Molfar” art studio and the international students’ exhibition “The Blacksmith’s Constellation” in the territory of the Regional Museum of Arts.

Heading for the fortress (the festival begins and never ends)

The “Blacksmith’s Holiday 2009” was drawing to a close… to be continued in Kamyanets-Podilsky, to which the united family of blacksmiths went on May 10 at the invitation of the National Historical and Architectural Reserve “Kamyanets” and the Kamyanets-Podilsky subdivision of the Union of Artist Blacksmiths of Ukraine. There, at the fortress territory, an impressive event lasted 2 days; but t hat is another story.

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  • 1 month later...
Guest Olga Polubotko

this year, we hosted 23 countries and more than 300 blacksmiths.
it was a huge success again.
if you want , I can give you the links to see teh photos from 2 exhibitions and teh festival itself.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Nice links and they show really excellent work. There is even an antique spinning wheel in one of them for Thomas' wife and Frosty's wife too. Seems like everyone like that copper and brass bird of prey and that strange cat. Good work shown all around. Thanks again for the links. B)

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