Chair Maker John Surlis – No. 13
John Surlis’s skill as a chairmaker is inherited from his grandfather, a native of Co. Leitrim. Based in the little village of Monasteraden, Co. Sligo, we watch John making a traditional ash wood Leitrim Chair in the slab and stick method. He uses the ‘beetle’ or cleaver to split the rungs and legs, and shapes them using a drawknife sitting astride his Cooper’s Mare. As a versatile craftsman, John also makes traditional donkey straddles & Sugáns, or twisted straw ropes. Made in 1980.
Commentary- Benedict Kiely; Music- Jolyon Jackson; Paddy Glacken & Matt Molloy; Running time – 26 minutes