This month PBS premiered “Good Work: Masters of the Building Arts”. Directed by filmmakers Marjorie Hunt and Paul Wagner and co-produced with the Smithsonian Institution Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, the film shines a bright light on a cast of artisans who imbue tradition into our built environment. In doing so, these tradesmen and women keep the legacy of their craft relevant in our modern lives.
In all, 8 disciplines are showcased in the film in quintessential PBS fashion. Profiled are Joseph Alonso (stone mason), Earl Barthé (plasterer), Nick Benson (stone carver), John Canning and Jacqueline Canning-Riccio (decorative painters), Jesus Cardena and Humberto Miranda (terra cotta artisans), Patrick Cardine (blacksmith), Dieter Goldkuhle (glass tradesman), Alberta Parra (adobe master).
These are not main stream building disciplines, but the work shouldn’t be mistakenly viewed as novelty. Each executes work as important and necessary today as the average trim carpenter, painter or tile setter. It’s because of men and women like those profiled here, men and women who have devoted themselves to these highest of building standards and expertise, that the fabric of our building heritage can remain tightly intact.
Watch the Full Film Below: