The purpose of our project is to document the life and work of Swedish master craftsman Wille Sundqvist, whose extensive knowledge, skills and abilities as a teacher have played a key role in keeping traditional Swedish woodcraft alive and thriving. In addition to serving as an important historical record, we believe this film will resonate with anyone who finds inspiration in the use of traditional skills, natural materials, and simple tools to form beautiful, lasting, utilitarian objects.
The project has already received sufficient initial grant funding to cover the cost of shooting the film. We are seeking additional funding through Kickstarter to cover editing, translation, and other necessary post-production costs required to produce a finished DVD, and hope that you'll consider helping us to make the finished film a reality.
Wille Sundqvist, from Högland, Västerbotten is widely considered one of Sweden’s living national treasures and is still an active woodworker at age 87. Wille’s traditional carved spoons and ladles; his turned bowls featuring carved inscriptions; and the educational work he has done through numerous international workshops and his book "Swedish Carving Techniques" (Taunton Press), have earned him global recognition and admiration. Wille’s generous willingness to share his knowledge and craft philosophy have made him a highly respected and sought-after teacher and role model, and he has played a key role in preserving and developing traditional Swedish woodcraft.
As a professional handicraft consultant during the period 1969 to 1985, Wille made a number of international trips during which he introduced Swedish woodworking traditions to a global audience. In 1975, his first class at the homestead of Drew and Louise Langsner in Western North Carolina effectively launched Country Workshops, a center for traditional woodworking education that has continued to spread Wille’s teachings to students from the U.S. and abroad for more than three decades.
Documenting Wille Sundqvist's craft skills and role in the Swedish crafts movement through a film that will be distributed nationally and internationally.
To disseminate and communicate traditional Scandinavian woodcraft, with its inherent skills, attitudes, and knowledge of materials and design, to a wider Swedish and international audience. The film will tell the story of traditions, skills, and knowledge that are disappearing in the West.
All cultural and handicraft-interested members of the public, aged 10 years and older.
The movie will be recorded over a period of seven days at Wille Sundqvist's home and studio in Högland, Bjurholm, Västerbotten through a collaboration between the companies s u r o l l e and handicraft consultant Nisse Stormlod. Marketing of the film will be conducted primarily through social media.
Woodworker Jögge Sundqvist (Umeå) has made and marketed crafts through his company s u r o l l e since 1999. Jögge’s work has been acquired by the National Art Council, Röhsska Museum, Västerbotten County Council, CAA, Umeå municipality, the Swedish Church, and others. Jögge is the author of the books ”Crafts in Wood" (Natur and Kultur) and "Carve for Kitchen and Garden" (Hemslöjdens förlag) and has produced four instructional videos on DVD (Danska idésellskabet). He is a frequent Course Lecturer in Scandinavia, Europe and the USA. Jögge Sundqvist is the son of Wille Sundqvist.
Bautafilm Ltd is located in Umeå and Tärnaby in Sweden. The team behind Bautafilm are very experienced on a broad scale in film production, training and project management. In addition to implementing the productions, the company has a expertise in film projects as, project manager, researcher, photographer, editor, etc. One of their short films won a prize at Berlin Film festival this year.
The mood of the film
The mood and pace of the film will reflect Wille’s experience and knowledge, and the peace he radiates. Nature is important in Wille’s world and is a basis for his creativity, and that will be emphasized throughout the film. The film will convey Wille’s special experience to the viewer, and his teaching skills will inspire people to start their own craft. The film will be inspiring and entertaining and can be appreciated without prior knowledge of crafts or woodworking. The film will convey a positive role model for young people and children, that encourages them to practice crafts.
Technical strategy and work process
We want to create a film with transitions and scene changes that support a peaceful atmosphere around Wille. We will work with overview images that fade in and out of the work being done. We will alternate between close-ups that show the work processes, and shots where the camera has eye contact with Wille as he explains what he does and why the chosen technique is important. We will emphasize smooth transitions, to create a steady flow of the film, with as many continuous processes as possible in each scene.
The background music will be contemplative and complement the images and enhance the content. Music will be used in the transitions and the major scenic shots. The sounds of nature (e.g. birds singing through an open window) and the sounds of the work (e.g. tools against wood) will permeate throughout.
Summary of content
- Brief introduction.
- Harvesting material in the woods.
- Cutting with an ax.
- Carving grasps.
- Spoon shapes and function.
- Turning of a bowl.
- Pattern Chip Carving and finishing.
- Technology and security.
- Historical review.
Wille Sundqvist's teaching methodologies, design and craft traditions have been taken up by many crafts enthusiasts over the years. We would like to mention the following internationally renowned persons:
- Drew Langsner (North Carolina, USA). Director, Country Workshops.
- Robin Wood (England). Turner and carver. Director of Heritage Craft Association. Organizer of Spoon Fest 2012.
- Del Stubbs (Minnesota, USA). Turner, knife-maker, carver.
- Jarrod M. Stone Dahl (Wisconsin, USA). Woodworker. Baskets. Canoes. Spoons and bowls.
- Mike Abbott (Herefordshire, England). Green Wood Chairs.
- Barnaby ”Spoon” Carder (Bristol, England). Spooncarver. Organizer of Spoon Fest 2012.
- Jan Harm ter Brugge (Holland). Spoon-maker.
- Professor Khu (Bridgeport, Connecticut).
- Jon Strom, Tom Dengler, Fred Livesay (Minnesota, USA). Woodworker and instructor at North House Folk School.
- Bill Copperswaith, The Yurt Foundation. (Maine, USA)
- Peter Follansbee (Massachusetts, USA). Woodworker of 1700s furniture. Green crafts.
Thank you in advance for your support of this project.
Risks and challenges
The biggest risk this project is that Wille Sundqvist is 87 years old. He is getting tired of age but still he is working with craft everyday. Last week when I talked to Wille he said he was in good shape and that he was eager to start with recording the film in June. He told me he is refusing all orders just to make bowls and spoons for the most generous donors. This tells us how he looks upon his own status. But of course everything can happen with a man at his age.
The biggest challenge is to finance the project. This is a non-profit project but I need funds to see the project through to completion, including final editing and the translation and text settings in English.
The film company has made a good job making a budget for the basic recordings. They are really enthisiastic about it all. As a start we will at least get Wille on tape but for the final editing and English translation and text we need your contribution.
Another challenge is to distribute the DVD in the US. We are seriously working with this with a little help from professional friends within the US.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (45 days)