Time in the Limelight

What a busy time it has been here at the Memoria Technica Workshop. If you are new to the blog, welcome! If you are a long time reader, thank you so much for following along. I’m very grateful for your support!

I have been remiss in posting updates on the blog this year due to many new developments here at the workshop.

Horology has found its way into the limelight! With the release of the podcast S-Town, there has been an uptick in interest, which has given horologists the opportunity to talk about what we do. Here at Memoria Technica, we have taken this duty seriously which is why you may have noticed a few new pages in the menu bar at the top of the blog. We have been busy putting together a lecture series, the workshop zine, and an enamel pin series to promote public engagement with the field.  Read on to hear about these and a few other developments.

A Few Announcements


If you’ve been wondering why I’ve been absent from the blog, it’s because I am writing a book for Penguin Publishers! Earlier this year Penguin approached me about writing a memoir of sorts, and I can’t express how humbled I am to have this opportunity. Oddly, I have always wanted to write a book, but I had no idea the moment would come so soon.

Writing such an account has been a bit difficult for me; sometimes the words come easily and other times I feel quite challenged by the prospect of producing such a volume. More than anything it’s been about finding a rhythm in the words, but all in all it’s been an extremely rewarding process and I can’t wait to share this project with you.

A short synopsis from Penguin:

“This book is the story of how Brittany formed an unusual bond with Dennis, a man she had never met but whose ghost she sensed in every half-finished horological puzzle he left behind. It’s a story about the mesmerising objects she has painstakingly restored over the course of her career: from rare timepieces to singing clockwork birds. But above all it’s a story about time: how it passes and how a horologist, more so than anyone, cannot escape it.”

Additionally, I’m excited to feature the work of some of my dear friends and colleagues. Supporting the horological community is essential for the future of our field. With each passing year, we lose more of our history and identity and become further removed from our memories. Recording the stories and preserving the legacies of those who were pioneers in our field is one of the greatest tasks we face.

Stay tuned for a publication date announcement!


A tiny Great Big Story!

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Back in March, I had the privilege to be featured on CNN’s Great Big Story. It’s exciting to share my work with new audiences, on a platform that exposes many new viewers to my little corner of the world.

I have received so much love and support, and for that I am extremely humbled. It’s amazing to me that our local Girl Scouts crafted a horology badge because the troop was inspired by what I do. How wonderful that young women see themselves growing up to preserve the heritage and gifts bestowed on us by our ancestors. It is so moving that people are getting in touch to give me their compliments and inquire about how to study. THANK YOU!

All of this momentum has led to a number of recent articles and interviews.

Check out the latest on:

Worn & Wound

Seattle’s The Stranger

Seattle’s Art Zone

 


Horological Lecture Series with Seattle’s Stimson Green Mansion

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This has been in development for some time now. We recently finalized the agenda with the staff at Stimson Green and are now putting together the first set of dates for the lecture series. These will be quarterly, with the intention of expansion including special events and small symposiums. We are currently looking for sponsors, so please do get in touch if you’d like to be involved!

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Announcing the Memoria Technica Enamel Pin Series

The enamel pin trend sucked me in… I can’t get enough of these artist made pins! Encouraged by my friend Alena Diaz, a local watchmaking student and pin maker, I took the plunge and designed a series of limited run pins. I wanted to commemorate some of my favorite objects and make them available to a more diverse crowd (my coloring book was made with similar sentiments). I plan to release a few more as time and finances allow – featuring the work of clockmaker and magician Robert Houdin and Balsamo the chattering magical skull made by Polish watchmaker and magician Joseffy. For now, I’ve started with the MADE lathe, the Silver Swan Automaton, the singing bird pistols by Fréres Rochat, and my workshop logo. For the first time ever, you have the perfect gift for the fashionable horology nerd in your life. Now available here!


 

Engine Turning Classes

Lastly, our Engine Turning classes have already filled up this year. But, not to worry, if you missed this set, I am working to schedule some for early 2018. I am looking forward to meeting my new students and can’t wait to set up a regular class schedule to suit the increase in demand. Guilloché is experiencing a revival of sorts!

Advanced Engine Turning

Hi All! So we finally finished up the last of our engine turning classes this month. It was great fun seeing how the student work developed over the sessions, as many students enrolled in more than one. With more complex projects, students singled in on a specific idea. A lot of time was spent making sure surfaces were dialed in flat and true. Students worked in silver, copper, and other materials. Here are the results!

 

David and I want to say thank you to all of our students and the support! We’re already planning our next series of classes and look forward to meeting our future attendees!

Until next time!

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Intermediate Engine Turning I – Group 2

This was a great class with students bringing many ideas and projects. Casey Burns, a local flute maker, decided to add engine turning to his instruments. You can see the pieces he turned in the photos below – check out his website for the finished flutes! Two watchmakers also enrolled in this session trying out some exciting concepts for dials and pendants – incorporating off center work and some challenging patterns. A long time ornamental turner and enthusiast also signed up looking for new inspiration in old traditions. The results from the class are stunning.

Intermediate Engine Turning I

Hey all! I hope you’ll enjoy some photos from our first session of Intermediate Engine Turning. We had another great group who brought some interesting concepts and ideas – such as using multiple centers and divergent patterns! Students used the elliptical chuck on both the straightline and rose engine, a pen chuck, the jig borer, and the Schaublin 102 to complete their various projects – from pens to watch dials!

 

Workshop Feature

If you haven’t signed up yet for an upcoming engine turning class and are considering it, the time is now!  I’m getting ready to order materials to accommodate special projects. I have one spot open in the beginners class and just a couple of spots in the advanced sessions.  Get in touch if you have any questions!

In other news, I am excited to say Hodinkee magazine did a write up on the Atlas Obscura article. You can read it here.

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