The Belle Epoque of Maigurs Knets
<< July, 2014 >>
SMTWTFS
12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031
Search Blog

Categories
100+1 Uses (1) RSS
Adam Davidson (10) RSS
admissions (1) RSS
Advertising (2) RSS
Alex Florov (5) RSS
Ardor (4) RSS
Art and Pipes (4) RSS
Ashton (1) RSS
Ashton (3) RSS
Behind-the-Scenes (11) RSS
blog (9) RSS
blog (40) RSS
bloopers (2) RSS
books (2) RSS
Brad Pohlmann (2) RSS
Brad Pohlmann (2) RSS
briar (8) RSS
Brick House Cigars (1) RSS
Brigham (2) RSS
Broken Pipe (2) RSS
Bruce Weaver (2) RSS
CAO (1) RSS
Capstan (6) RSS
Carlos Torano (1) RSS
Castello (6) RSS
Chacom (4) RSS
cigars (20) RSS
Claudio Albieri (1) RSS
Claudio Cavicchi (3) RSS
comic strips (2) RSS
Cornell & Diehl (10) RSS
Customer Service (6) RSS
Dunhill (12) RSS
Ernie Markle (1) RSS
Ernie Markle (2) RSS
Escudo (1) RSS
Esoterica (2) RSS
estate pipes (17) RSS
events (2) RSS
Famous Pipe Smokers (11) RSS
Fitness (1) RSS
Flor de Gonzalez (1) RSS
Food (12) RSS
Gabriele (1) RSS
Gamboni (2) RSS
Gawith Hoggarth & Co (1) RSS
gift cards (1) RSS
Giveaways (6) RSS
G. L. Pease (10) RSS
grain (1) RSS
Gran Habano (1) RSS
Grant Batson (1) RSS
Grechukhin (2) RSS
hemp wick (1) RSS
Hermit Tobacco (1) RSS
Hiroyuki Tokutomi (9) RSS
history (4) RSS
Humor (23) RSS
Ikebana (1) RSS
Il Duca (1) RSS
Interview (2) RSS
IPCPR (14) RSS
IPSD (2) RSS
Italy (3) RSS
J.Alan (1) RSS
J. Alan (11) RSS
Japan (1) RSS
Jess Chonowitsch (1) RSS
J&J (3) RSS
Johs (2) RSS
Kaywoodie (1) RSS
Kei-ichi Gotoh (2) RSS
Kristoff (1) RSS
La Gloria Cubana (1) RSS
Lars Ivarsson (3) RSS
Lasse Skovgaard (4) RSS
Leo (1) RSS
Letter (1) RSS
lighters (1) RSS
Low Country Pipe and Cigar (3) RSS
Luciano (3) RSS
Mac Baren (17) RSS
Maigurs Knets (2) RSS
McClelland (6) RSS
Michael Lindner (2) RSS
Michael Parks (1) RSS
Michail Kyriazanos (1) RSS
Michal Novak (2) RSS
Mystery Tobacco (2) RSS
Nanna Ivarsson (2) RSS
nasal snuff (1) RSS
Nathan Armentrout (1) RSS
Neerup (1) RSS
Newminster (1) RSS
newsletter (266) RSS
Oliva (1) RSS
Orlik (5) RSS
Padron (1) RSS
People (22) RSS
Pesaro (1) RSS
Pete Prevost (1) RSS
Peter Heding (2) RSS
Peter Heeschen (2) RSS
Peterson (7) RSS
Peter Stokkebye (3) RSS
photography (18) RSS
pipe accessories (3) RSS
pipe basics (4) RSS
Pipe Clubs (2) RSS
Pipe Fiesta (1) RSS
pipe making (6) RSS
pipe making (55) RSS
pipes (44) RSS
pipes (8) RSS
Pipe Shows (23) RSS
Pipes in Film (4) RSS
pipe tobacco (81) RSS
poster (1) RSS
Press (7) RSS
Rad Davis (1) RSS
Radice (6) RSS
Ray Kurusu (1) RSS
Reiner (1) RSS
Reviews (4) RSS
Rocky Patel (1) RSS
Rocky Patel (2) RSS
ROPP (1) RSS
Sales (3) RSS
Samuel Gawith (1) RSS
Samuel Gawith (2) RSS
Savinelli (3) RSS
scott thile (2) RSS
Sebastien Beo (4) RSS
Ser Jacopo (3) RSS
Simeon Turner (1) RSS
Sixten Ivarsson (2) RSS
Smio Satou (3) RSS
smokingpipes.com (74) RSS
SPC Merchandise (1) RSS
SPC University (2) RSS
Stanwell (4) RSS
Storient (1) RSS
Summary (6) RSS
Takeo Arita (2) RSS
Tatuaje (2) RSS
technology (5) RSS
Thanksgiving (1) RSS
Three Nuns (4) RSS
tobacco (7) RSS
tobacco aging (1) RSS
tobacco blending (5) RSS
tobacco review (5) RSS
Tom Eltang (5) RSS
Tonni Nielsen (1) RSS
Torano (1) RSS
travel (70) RSS
Tsuge (3) RSS
Vauen (1) RSS
video (57) RSS
video (5) RSS
Viktor Yashtylov (1) RSS
virginia (1) RSS
YouTues (4) RSS
Archives
Photo Albums
florov (1)
RSS

29 January 2013

The Belle Epoque of Maigurs Knets
Art Nouvea advertisement by Alphonse Mucha
Art Nouveau advertisement by Alphonse Mucha

Some days ago Ted passed by my desk, and in noticing several simple gesture drawings I had done of a handful of pipes, asked, "Are those Maigurs?" We deal with a lot of pipes here -- a lot of pipes, and I think it says something about this particular artisan's work that even in the simplest of two-dimensional renderings, his designs can be distinguished at a moment's glance. Nothing flows like Maigurs Knets. That's not to say he is without peer in terms of grace of line and form (though he's certainly up there with the best), but more pointedly that he's chosen for his inspiration an artistic style no other pipemaker has yet to even delve into: Art Nouveau.

Some time ago Adam and I, spurred on by a post on Neil Archer Roan's blog concerning the recent debut of the fashionista-targeted "Stiff" smoking pipe, were discussing the nature of design; more specifically, the trade-offs that have to be made between stylization and ease of mass-production. I had pointed out to him that while the furniture designs he was discussing (those of the Art Deco, Streamline Moderne, and Danish Modern schools) are making yet another a comeback in certain cultural nooks and corners, I've only seen the earlier, but utterly beautiful Art Nouveau style see renewal in mediums of worn fashion -- namely jewelry and clothing. My point was, of course, that Art Nouveau furniture suffered from one majorly inhibiting factor: Attempting to mass-produce its lush, flowing, elegant, complex and organic style out of anything like quality materials would likely be a capital-devouring nightmare.

Art Nouveau lintel
Art Nouveau lintel
Art Nouveau stairway
Art Nouveau stairway
Art Nouveau desk
Art Nouveau desk

Fortunately, this isn't something an independent artisan pipemaker has to worry about -- just the extreme level of skill it takes in terms of both design and shaping to actually create an Art Nouveau smoking instrument. It may be telling that, at least to my knowledge, no such thing even existed during the Art Nouveau movement's 1890-1910 "Belle Epoque" heyday. Evidently it would take the unprecedented dissemination of independent pipemaking artisanship that we enjoy today to finally produce such a thing -- and even under these far more conducive conditions Maigurs is the single artisan to as of yet step forward. And not only has he stepped forward, he's absolutely nailed it.

(At this point some of you may be recalling theories on how the size of a population effects the works of genius it may be expected to produce; the greater the number of individuals there are active in a culture, or a sub-culture, the greater the likelihood great works will become manifest. This is, of course, assuming the presence of a popularly-accepted philosophy which encourages greatness -- which I believe today's artisan pipemakers, and pipe-collectors alike, certainly do.)

When it comes to his freehand designs, line and flow are the essential elements; fertile curves, swoops, and arcs which take flight with seemingly effortless imagination. Graining and accents follow up, playing in harmony with Maigurs' sculpting in order to emphasize a sense of richness and lush beauty. Even if you were to take the latter aspects out of play, his creations' distinctly Art Nouveau flow remains unmistakable.

Maigurs Knets Pipe and Sketch 1

Maigurs Knets Pipe and Sketch 2

Maigurs Knets Pipe and Sketch 3

Even his straightforward, classic shapes receive lavish treatment; finely-wrought artistic embellishments call to mind the richly decorated Ulmer pipes of old Bavaria, albeit in a much quieter style; Maigurs forgoestypical accents like the flashy silver inlay of the antique Ulmer, rendering his own pattern-work in natural materials and contrasting finishes. Gently drifting, crisply-defined leaves are smooth-polished, set against a fine sandblast background, or an abstract floral inlay is created by hand-making a custom composite stem-base embedded with a section of pine-cone.

Maigurs Knets Pipe, top and bottom views

In terms of pipemaking, Maigurs is most closely associated with Alex Florov, and both share a background in professional model-making for the Industrial Design and hobbyist industries - it's how they met. It should come as little surprise then that the complex and flowing works of both artisans' designs are made possible through detailed shaping of the briar by hand, with finely-honed chisels on Alex's part, and with a selection of specifically-shaped carbide burrs on Maigurs's. They are both, essentially, pipe-sculptors, and like the Art Nouveau furniture of yesteryear, they each seek to produce works of line, flow, and form that, if they could be copied by a machine at all, would require the highly advanced industrial technology to do so, even in materials far more forgiving than the dense, hardy, often unpredictable root of the briar; works, in short, whose individualistic art defies easy-come reproduction.

Eric Squires: Copywriter

 Eric Squires: Copywriter









Posted by eric at 11:53 AM | Link | 3 comments

Re: The Belle Epoque of Maigurs Knets
My Maigurs Knets piece is an absolute joy to hold, smoke, and inevitably stare at. He is, in my opinion, the most innovative, organic, and enigmatic pipe carver out there. The fact that he has recently abandoned all former influence, and decided to give himself to expressing his art in the pipe medium, makes him all the more an artist of the highest degree. I'm just glad I was able to get such a wonderful piece of his work while it is still attainable!

Posted by Landoid on January 29, 2013 at 8:57 PM


Re: The Belle Epoque of Maigurs Knets
Landoid -

Even though those of us who work here at Smokingpipes are privelaged to regularly handle pipes made by some of the most established artisans around, from the very first batch we recieved Maigurs's work has impressed all of us - a lot.

Posted by eric on February 4, 2013 at 3:00 PM


Re: The Belle Epoque of Maigurs Knets
A very nice piece on Mr. Knets indeed. There is room for these artists in the pipe world and thankfully their work is appreciated. I also highly recommend another blog post on Maigurs written up on the Tobacco Days blog. http://tobaccodays.com/articles/who-is-maigurs-knets-and-why-does-he-focus-on-exquisite-minutia/

Posted by Jim Schneider on May 19, 2013 at 7:08 PM



Name:   Required
Email:   Required your email address will not be publicly displayed.

Want to receive notifications when new comments are added? Login/Register for an account.

Anti-spam key

Type in the text that you see in the above image:

Your comment:

Sorry, no HTML allowed!

Subscription Options

You are not logged in, so your subscription status for this entry is unknown. You can login or register here.


1-888-366-0345

 


New Pipes



Fresh Items



Specials


 

Click to verify BBB accreditation and to see a BBB report for Smokingpipes.com.

View in English View in Japanese