Saturday, September 26, 2009

Elfshot: Sticks and Stones, an Archeology Blog on Canada Blog Friends

Tim Rast writes Elfshot: Sticks and Stones, which is an archeology blog centered on his life and work in St Johns, Newfoundland. Tim is a modern day flintknapper and his domain is profiled this week on Canada Blog Friends.

A flintknapper is someone who makes stone arrowheads, and Tim specializes in recreating the authentic points used by the Maritime Archaic Indians, the Groswater and Dorset Palaeoeskimo and the Newfoundland Recent Indians.

"Knapping" is the shaping of flint, chert, obsidian or other stone through the process of lithic reduction to manufacture stone tools, strikers for flintlock firearms, or to produce flat-faced stones for building or facing walls, and flushwork decoration.

Dumpdiggers everywhere could learn a thing or two about Flintknapping by reading Tim's blog. He makes it fun and easy because his writing is terrific. Start with this piece about Dorset Palaeoeskimo knives because it’s a pretty good little snapshot of what the site is, and what Elfshot is all about. It brings archaeology, arts and crafts, and geothermal energy in the high Arctic all together, with a pinch of polar bears.

Tim Rast describes his experiments patinating copper as a fun bit of household chemistry that’s useful for the sort of artifact reproduction work that he does.

Dumpdiggers might also find Tim's first post about the Tuktut Nogait bow that he's working on for Parks Canada to be quite interesting, but the Ioffe Site post is really outstanding. In this piece he describes a site that he found while working as a resource archaeologist for an Adventure Canada cruise last fall.

Tim Rast is Canadian, from Alberta. He has two university degrees including a Masters in Anthropology from Memorial University in Newfoundland. He's a terrific writer, researcher and blogger, and a bright light in the darkness that surrounds the study of the earliest Canadian people.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Passion for the Past Antiques in Toronto

The writing is on the chalkboard out front of Passion for the Past antiques store at 1646 Queen St West (Queen and Roncesvalles) in downtown Toronto, Ontario.

For ten years now the shop at the top of the hill has been selling fine china, dishware, glass, furniture and jewelry to the people of Toronto. But now the portal is closing.

Passion for the Past goes online!

Joe is going to sell online and reduce his expenses by about 90%. And he doesnt need Smojoe to tell him that selling online is an entirely different business. It requires promotions and online storytelling, and the love and respect of editors, bloggers and discussion forum moderators.

Here's Joe with a prized LORRAINE GLASS CO. MONTREAL, QUEBEC, CANADIAN HAND BLOWN RED GLASS CENTERPIECE, 27” LONG X 10” WIDE X 10” HIGH, CIRCA 1962-1974 this gorgeous piece of art glass is a good example of what Joe loves to sell at his bricks and mortar store and now online.

The hand drawn signs out front of the venue have the look of frustration and desperation in their manner - 70% off is hard to ignore in any font. And that's what brought me into the store. Once inside I met Joe Clement and his mother and was carried away by their friendly manner and entertaining conversation. Joe has the slight trace of an East Coast accent, but complains that its from working with John and his diction should be French.

Joseph Clement is partners with John Hogan, whom I’d met before when I was in there earlier in the summer. Joe was new to me. He made me laugh when I asked him about certain things and their cultural values? His rather dismissive remarks told me that he worships antiques on an entirely higher level than us Dumpdiggers; perhaps he places craftsmanship above historic value. "Put it this way," he says "If this place were on fire I would waste my time grabbing anything from that case."



See anything you like? Contact Passion for the Past as follows,

John Hogan or Joe Clement
Passion For The Past Antiques
1646 Queen Street West,
Toronto, Ontario,
M6R 1B2

Phone: (416) 535-3883
Email: infoATpassionforthepastantiquesDOTcom

Store Hours:
Tuesday-Sunday:11:00 AM to 6:00 PM;
Monday: Closed

Here's a Mustache Cup from Germany.

1 1/2 blocks East of Roncesvalles Ave. and Queen St. West intersection, between Callender St. and Triller Ave.