Congratulations to the newly certified puukkoseppämestari; Tapio Syrjälä, Eero Kovanen, Jari Liukko and Mikko Inkeroinen. They are the first new master bladesmiths confirmed since 2009. They had two years to prepare for the final exam, making two knives for the jury. One a “user” and the other one a collector grade piece. They join the seven other puukkoseppämestari; Pekka Tuominen, Jukka Hankala, JT Pälikkö, Arto Liukko, Markku Vippola, Mikko Haverinen, Pasi Jaakonaho as master bladesmiths certified by the Finnish National Agency for Education.
Each of the four has been featured on this blog, please check the Index Page to learn more about them and their work. Again congratulations on your achievement!
In the wake of the passing of Wille Sundqvist, on June the 3rd 2018 at the age of 92, I wanted to write a few words about the man.
He is the one that lit the spark for the new Wood Culture that has been spreading so much in recent years and has generated so many talented wood carvers and wood turners around the world. His book “Swedish Carving Techniques” first published in 1990 and now back in print is THE textbook of Swedish slöjd and spoon carving.
In addition to his work of teaching he was also the adviser for many of the wood carving tools we now take for granted. He was behind the design and proportions of the Gräsfors Bruks carving axe, he helped perfect the Hans Karlsson slöjd axe, he was the adviser for Frosts and KJ Eriksson wood carving knives and, together with his son Jögge and fellow carver Beth Moen, worked to improve the geometries of their factory made spoon knives.
As a leasure time wood carver and former depressed I can confirm, like JoJo Wood stressed many times, of the therapeutic effects that carving has that leads to peace of mind and thus I try to pass that message on. I also try to expose the fun of wood working as a pure leisure to my friends that have kids, since, as Wille himself said, carving is a great way to train muscles and coordination between your brain and your hands.
I wish Wille a good journey, may he rest in peace and I send my thoughts to his son Jögge and his family.