I’m surprised that, at least among that special part of blogland reserved for crafters and indie enthusiasts, there’s not more talk of the Sundance Artist Community. I realize of course that while not mass produced it’s not exactly a girl (or guy) sitting in their living room trying to make a go of a hobby but that doesn’t mean that the artisans there aren’t part of this movement.

Most people know of Robert Redford and the independent film festival that he holds yearly in Sundance but I think few know of Redford’s reasoning behind starting the festival and the things and entities that followed: Sundance Resort, Institute, Preserve, and of course, the Sundance Catalog. All of these things, I think, speak to what we as a part of the handcrafted movement strive to accomplish: creating in an inspirational environment and managing to make a living off the things that we make, things that might not be accepted by the mainstream (though this is indeed changing), but goods that harken back to a way to a life that most of us forgot was ever lived. Now we make things not necessarily out of necessity but because it speaks to a background that we all share – at one time, everyone in this country (and the world, for that matter) was united in the goal of just surviving and to do that one had to be self-serving…

I like what Redford says about the catalog and the Artists Community he’s created at Sundance – the goal is really to keep alive those ways of living not because I need to make a quilt so The Bug doesn’t freeze to death this winter (though that’s not a bad idea) but because I can and because it’s these kinds of things that connect me with those who came before:

Supporting and enhancing the role of art in a new age that is seeing old tried and true formulas becoming outdated and outmoded.

The Artist Community at Sundance really seems like a wonderful place and it’s completely awesome to me that someone as well known (and obviously not in need of the funds that all this generates) takes the time to foster these talents in people and put them out there for the benefit of the rest of us. Observe…

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{Jeanine Payer New Moon Ring, $239}

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{Rosalie Quilt, $375-395}

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{Artisan Hammered Flatware, $35}

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{Sari Shoulder Bag, $98}

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The rest of the catalog can be found here, if you’re so inclined…

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