PBS series crafts engrossing episode on forging


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“Craft in America — Forge,” airing at 10 p.m. Friday on WQED-TV, packs a lot into an hour to update viewers on the lively state of this fiery metalworking method.

The program opens with metal artist Chloe Darke, 22, the first female to forge sterling silver place settings for Old Newbury Crafters of Amesbury, Mass. She enjoys the physicality of her craft, she says, and that she is contributing to the legacy of the 400-year-old studio.

Iraq War veteran Tom Pullin releases internalized experiences through art while completing a degree at the Corcoran College of Art + Design, Washington, D.C., where instructor Davide Prete is on the leading edge of applying 3-D printing technology to their craft.

Finally, the program visits sculptor Albert Paley, who began his career as a goldsmith and jeweler and now employs 18 in his Rochester, N.Y., studio to work on worldwide public and private commissions. His projects are hand-drawn, then rendered in cardboard, and then metal models — “almost like three-dimensional sketching,” the artist says. Locally, he designed the decorative metal event poster frames installed in the Wood Street subway station.

Footage is included of work on “Paley on Park Avenue,” 13 monumental site-specific sculptures created for a public art competition in New York that were installed June 17 and remain through Nov. 8. “This whole thing’s an exercise in optimism,” he says of his most ambitious project to date.

“Forge” is the premiere episode of season five of “Craft in America,” a PBS series that consistently exhibits high production values, revelatory content and inspiring artists.


Post-Gazette art critic Mary Thomas: mthomas@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1925.

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