The Metal Arts Guild (MAG) is an independent, non-profit, educational organization
of people who are skilled, interested, or share in the production and exhibition of metals.

Our Community

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Everyone is welcome to join: from the beginner to the master craftsperson, teachers and students, metal arts collectors and more. Each member is a vital part of making the Guild work for our community.

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We support the work of outstanding metal artists by organizing exhibitions, lectures, and workshops, awarding an annual MAG Community Project Grant, various student scholarships, and offering resources and opportunities for our members.

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MAG is a 501(c 3) non-profit, all-volunteer-led arts organization, and we rely on your generosity to help us provide metal related events, lectures, workshops, exhibitions and networking mixers to the membership and community.

Featured Member

Each month a new Featured Member is chosen from the completed member profiles on our website. Their interview and work is highlighted on our blog and social media. Visit our archive of past Featured Members.

December 2019

 

     

Brian Meek

Websites: knewconcepts.com; alberic.net 

Tell us a little about yourself.

That’s opening a very deep rabbit hole.  I’ve been a metalsmith in one form or another since I was 14 or 15.  Started out wanting to make swords and armor, which led to college for a BFA in jewelry design/metalsmithing.  A year in London at City of London Polytechnic (The Cass) and then an MFA in metals from Cranbrook Academy of Art, outside Detroit.  The Cass made me a serious technician, and Cranbrook’s introduction to Detroit’s machinist culture taught me the machinist mindset, and how to deal with serious tools.  Big, multi-ton tools that I now can’t live without. After that, I banged around the country for a while chasing a teaching gig, doing the adjunct tango. I lucked into a position teaching Adult-ed jewelry in Santa Barbara, where I taught for 12 years, in one of the best programs in the country.  I have very happy memories of that program, and those people. The end of that was when I got married and moved up to the Bay Area to be with my wife. At that point I reunited with an old friend, Lee Marshall, whom I knew from Bonny-Doon press days. He was puttering around with these little red saws that he’d invented.  So I told him I’d help out with the machining for a few weeks while I was job hunting.

Now it’s 10 years later, Lee’s passed away, and I’m running the company, continuing the journey we started in a garage not far from the sea.  There’s a lot more to that story, of course, but that’s the cliff notes version. Lee and I discovered that we made one hell of a team, and we built Knew Concepts from a couple of guys in a garage into a world renowned company with distributors from one end of the planet to the other.  The saws are innovative enough that one of my designs was recently written up in a study of the origins of creative design by a researcher at Cambridge University.

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