CanIRON XIII

Dates: August 3-6, 2023
Location: Centre Wellington Community Sportsplex
Host City: Fergus, Ontario
Theme: “Sparking Your Creativity”

CanIRON XIII will run from Thursday August 3 to Sunday August 6, 2023 at Centre Wellington Community Sportplex located at 550 Belsyde Ave E in Fergus, Ontario. The Ontario Artist Blacksmith Association will host the event.

more about registration on the registration site.

Featured Blacksmiths

Terry Sheridan, Collingwood, Ontario
Matt Jenkins, St. Andrews, Manitoba
Brad Millman, Wiarton, Ontario
Cairn Cunnane, Ottawa, Ontario
Mathieu Collette, Montreal, Quebec
Peter Braspenninx, Michigan, USA
Robb Martin, Floradale, Ontario
David Robertson, Cargill, Ontario

and more…

Organizing Team/Contact

Ontario Artist Blacksmith Association

Sponsors

CanIRON VE – Manitoba Blacksmith Guild
Artist Blacksmith’s Association of North America

Thank you to our sponsors!

Gallery At CanIRON XIII – Call to Artists

Kelly Probyn-Smith – Gallery Manager – info@elfworksstudios.com

Once again CanIRON XIII will be mounting a professional level Gallery presentation to illustrate the scope of contemporary forged metalwork, both to inspire fellow artisan blacksmiths and to inform the general public of the wide range of work we collectively undertake.

peter braspenninx, phyreforge.com
big cube 2 – peter braspenninx, phyreforge.com

For CanIRON XIII, each attendee is invited to display up to 3 pieces of work – large or small, in the Gallery space. This is a great opportunity to show the rest of the blacksmithing community – and the public – what you do. You may offer the items up for sale, but please be aware that the items must remain in the gallery for the duration of the event, and Gallery Staff will not handle any sales transactions.

The intent of the Gallery is to highlight the diversity and artistry of the Ontario blacksmithing community as much as possible. To that end, you are welcome to present 3 different pieces of work. Items that are simply duplications of the same design (ie copies of the identical candle holder or corkscrew- may be withheld from display – at the discretion of Gallery staff).

Don’t have time to make something new, but have an existing piece that you want to bring? Please do – older works are welcome, but new work is strongly encouraged! Please remember that the public will have access to the gallery to see your creations, and pick up your promotional materials and information.

There will be more information about the gallery coming, but start thinking, and start making. If you are intending to bring a piece or three, or if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me at info@elfworksstudios.com and put CanIron or Gallery in the subject line. Even if you don’t know what you are bringing, knowing your intent will be a huge help in the setup.

Each item submitted must be identified by artisan and include a basic description. For those who are planning to bring items to the Gallery, please provide as much of the following information as possible – ahead of time (and as early as possible) will be a huge help.

Artists name (and/or Studio name)
Designation (Professional/Full-Time/Part-Time Blacksmith)
Length of Time Blacksmithing
Work Title
Materials Used
Creation Date
Shop Location & email or website
For Sale (and price)/ CanIron Auction / Private Collection (price if appropriate)
Also – approximate dimensions – hung or freestanding (floor / table mounted?)

**Please note that work for display in the gallery is to be primarily in metals, other materials should be secondary accents only. If you have a piece you would like to display that is not primarily in metals, contact Kelly ahead of time to discuss it. Samples of historic objects may be allowed for display – again, contact Kelly to discuss these possibilities.

All pieces must fit through a standard doorway. Oversized and extremely heavy pieces, or pieces which require assembly will require help from the the artists involved. Again, if you are unsure, contact Kelly before the event to discuss it.

**Also please note that “Professional Blacksmith” will, for gallery purposes, refer to those who make a majority portion of their living from blacksmithing work

CanIRON XIII Demonstrator: Terry Sheridan

Terry Sheridan, Collingwood, Ontario

Axes, adzes, forged pans, and tools
thebarnstudio.ca

Terry is a self-employed machinist, welder and blacksmith from Collingwood, Ontario, Canada. Most of his work is in the heavy construction machine industry, as well as, the local ski resort industry. At his business, most of his forging is for industrial applications; gas forges and power hammers are primarily used at the machine shop. His passion; however, is at home using a good ole’ coal forge and simple, hand-forged tools to create historically correct items from centuries past, including adzes, axes, chisels, knives, lead ladles and dividers, to name a few.

Terry has often demonstrated and taught at blacksmith organizations across the U.S.A., including SOFA Quadstate, Northern Ohio Blacksmith Assoc., Batson Blade Symposium, Alabama Forge Council, Pittsburgh Artist Blacksmith Assoc., the Illinois, Maryland and the Adirondack Blacksmith groups, in addition to the John C. Campbell Folk School.

For CanIRON XIII Terry will be demonstrating creating edged tools including a tomahawk.

CanIRON XIII Demonstrator: David Robertson

David Robertson, Cargill, Ontario

Wrought iron, furniture, sculpture
artistblacksmith.com

David is professional artist blacksmith with work in private collections across Canada, the US and as far flung as Ireland and Germany. After opening his business in 1987 and gaining 6 years of experience, he started teaching blacksmithing. In 1996 he was honored to be chosen as Artist in Residence at Joseph Schneider Haus museum in Kitchener. As a graduate of the University of Waterloo’s engineering program he has a unique perspective on design, and metallurgy and structural integrity.

Today his primary focus is using organic elements to create attractive and functional pieces. “Organic forms such as vines, leaves and flowers also translate into the unique nature of the steel. The semi-fluid nature of the steel when it is hot allows the flow of these modern designs. When cold, the strength of the steel permits the long self-supporting lines that are common in the plant world.”

David was demonstrator and lecturer at CanIRON VIII, and demonstrator at CanIRON VE.

For CanIRON XIII David will be acting as one of the “Lead Hands” to the demonstrators in the teaching tent.

CanIRON XIII Demonstrator: Brad Millman

Brad Millman, Wiarton, Ontario

Hand made custom cutlery and outdoor blades.
instagram.com/blackmapleblades

Brad started blacksmithing as a youth at the Fanshawe Pioneer Village in London then started back up with it in 2015 and quickly started focusing on knives. I volunteer at the Grey Roots museum in their blacksmith shop during the summer months. I have made kitchen cutlery, hunting and camping knives and axes. I love the brute de forge style of blade, whether it’s mono steel or pattern welded. My favorite knife to make is a chef knife. I really enjoy sharing what I have learned with others.

I will be demonstrating the forging, grinding, and heat treatment of what will hopefully be a large chopping knife, with a forged and wrapped handle. If there is time I will also be making some smaller utility knives.

I will be hosting a discussion as well, talking about what I have learned along the way and sharing how and why I do what I do. I plan on trying to cover everything from blade design, forging, grain refinement, heat treatment, finishing, and handle prep. As well as everything I have learned about damascus/pattern-welded steel.

CanIRON XIII Demonstrator: Robb Martin

Robb Martin, Floradale, Ontario

Blacksmithing, medieval armour, and functional sculpture
thak.ca
instagram.com/thakironworks

Robb Martin began his career in blacksmithing in 1987 and began in 1989 what is now called Thak Ironworks Inc. With an interest in blacksmithing, medieval armour and sculpture, Robb (or Thak as he is sometimes known) combined these three disciplines into his business early on. These influences have developed into a very distinctive style of metalwork. Sometimes traditional, sometimes contemporary, and sometimes futuristic and fantastical or a combination of all the above.

Thak creates high quality forgework which blurs the line between utility and art. “Functional Sculpture”. Robb enjoys designing and creating a wide array of unique, one-of-a-kind pieces for clients worldwide.

For CanIRON XIII Robb will be acting as one of the “Lead Hands” to the demonstrators in the teaching tent.

CanIRON XIII Demonstrator: Matt Jenkins

Matt Jenkins, St. Andrews, Manitoba

Blacksmithing tools, architectural, home decor
cloverdaleforge.com
instagram.com/cloverdaleforge

Matt spent his childhood in a construction zone as his parents and siblings constructed a log home. His dad introduced him to blacksmithing, although, as most teenagers, he stayed away from his parents’ interests. That attitude changed when he landed a summer job in the blacksmith shop at Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site.

Having picked up a hammer at an early age, Matt feels at home working beside an anvil. Over the past 25 years, he has honed his skills and techniques while studying under master smiths around North America. Matt Jenkins is an internationally recognized award-winning blacksmith. In 2009, he received an Honorable Mention in the team forging at the World Forging Championship in Stia, Italy. Returning to Stia in 2015, Matt took home first place in the Drawing and Design category.

Matt uses hand tools and early industrial equipment to create designs with a timeless feel. In addition to daily forging for clients, he leads workshops at Cloverdale Forge and has taught at the John C. Campbell Folk School and the Center for Metal Arts.

For CanIRON XIII Matt will be demonstrating Design elements related to his 366 hook display.

CanIRON XIII Demonstrator: Cairn Cunnane

Cairn Cunnane, Ottawa, Ontario

Sculptural crossovers of figurative, architectural, and plant forms
cairncunnane.ca

Cairn Cunnane is an Ottawa artist who creates pieces for specific people, places, or ideas, that range from hand held to large architectural installations.

“I’m learning about form, how to create a form to express a concept. I like the physical process as much as the finished product. Most of my work is handmade and this inevitably involves some form of blacksmithing in part or all of the piece.”

My demonstrations will be one about forging bronze, and the other about forging aluminum.

CanIRON XIII Demonstrator: Mathieu Collette

Mathieu Collette, Montreal, Quebec

To perpetuate the existence of the intangible heritage of traditional blacksmithing by carrying out research, dissemination, transmission and updating of these ancestral skills
lesforgesdemontreal.org
instagram.com/lesforgesdemontreal

After spending 4 years in France as an apprentice of master blacksmiths Serge Carvalho (ironworker), Henri Sabatier (harquebusier cutler) and André Maltaverne (carver and mechanical blacksmith), Mathieu Collette came back to Quebec with the idea of founding Les Forges de Montréal, helped by his father, Pierre Collette. Mathieu wanted to pass on his disappearing trade by creating a blacksmith school and a place for the preservation of intangible heritage. They completely restored and rehabilitated the old Riverside pumping station to settle there, and in 2000, the organization was founded.

For Mathieu Collette, the forge trade was not just a passion or a profession: it represented the intangible heritage of our ancestors, an eco-responsible and sustainable way of production, and a bequest to future generations. Moreover, the traditional forge was an integral part of Mathieu’s family, who descends from a line of blacksmiths and craftsmen.

For CanIRON XIII Mathieu and his helpers Ivan Savchev and Jeremy Corriveau with Justine Southam will be demonstrating traditional forging of a Biscayne axe.

CanIRON XIII Demonstrator: Peter Braspenninx

Peter Braspenninx, Michigan, USA

Hand crafted works of art and tools for the simple life
phyreforge.com
instagram.com/phyreforge

Pete Braspenninx, owner of Phyre Forge, is a graduate of the University of Michigan school of art and design (2004). He is an artist, blacksmith, and educator. His work has been shown, collected, and published nationally and internationally. His work focuses primarily on building shape and line through visual connections and joinery using traditional skills to make modern forms.

He also does architectural iron work along with sculptural work Pete’s work has been published in Anvil’s Ring, and De Klinknagel (Belgium). He has demonstrated at varied blacksmithing events, and conducted workshops at major craft centers. He has exhibited widely, including a solo show at the Metal Museum in 2018

For CanIRON XIII Pete will be demonstrating using traditional joinery techniques to create modern sculpture.