Kihulasele – abimootoriga jalgrattale ja rohtunud radade sissetallajale / To Meelis Kihulane – a motorized bicycle and a breaker of overgrown paths
Vakad, karbid, sõelad – painutatud kerega esemete valmistamine, the new book by Meelis Kihulane on making bentwood boxes and sieves, keeps alive the proud tradition of classical Estonian ethnography, at the same time as imparting to its readers the insight and hands-on approach of a true practitioner. The book is presented in the form of a practical handbook with video appendices – or a ’videobook’.
From the perspective of teaching the practice, the book is skilfully composed and the photos carefully selected and unbelievably well photographed. The author’s substantial experience as an instructor, and also the resoluteness of the editors (museum curators by profession), has indisputably played its part here.
Vakad, karbid, sõelad poses some questions about the future of storage media used for presenting information on handicraft in general. The production of the videos accompanying the book is at a high professional level and they are an excellent addition to the book, but the combination of a traditional book and a non-descript thumb-drive creates a somewhat uncomfortable consumer experience.
Kihulane’s two-part work is thus somewhat reminiscent of an old motorised bicycle – a tad too clumsy for riding down overgrown ethnographic paths on a summer night, yet too bulky with its atavistic pedals for cycling any faster. But such is the fate of a pioneer…