Chairmaker follows 80-year-old Dewey Thompson from Sugarloaf Hollow, Kentucky, as a rough-hewn rocking chair takes form under his experienced hands and well-worn knife. But this “how-to” film is as much about how to live as it is about how to make a chair: Thompson’s philosophy and insights into his character are gently interwoven with the depiction of his work. For the student of folk culture, the film provides a rare opportunity to see a folk artist creating his craft in the context of his everyday life, and for the student of history, Chairmaker offers a glimpse into the past, when Thompson's skills and values were once widespread in rural America.
Screenings & Festivals
American Film Festival
Columbus International Film Festival
Smithsonian Institution, Festival of American Folklife
International Festival of Documentary