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A Fine Line

Studio Crafts in Ontario from 1930 to the Present

by (author) Gail Crawford

Dundurn Press
Initial publish date
Oct 1998
General, General, General
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 1998
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Oct 1998
    List Price

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A Fine Line celebrates in an accessible popular history the accomplishments of contemporary fine craftspeople. Using Ontario as a base, the book examines how the public eagerly embraced the work of craft designers and makers, starting with the first major craft exhibit in Toronto in 1931 at Ridpaths, and following the story from those beginnings to the present.

There has never been a comprehensive book on contemporary studio crafts in any Canadian province; one is long overdue. A Fine Line places potters, weavers, textile printers, bookbinders, metalsmiths, blown glass artists, stained glass artists, furniture makers, and many more into the larger context of the crafts movement in Ontario in the second half of this century. The book features six decades of outstanding work by Ontario’s designer-craftspeople in colour and in black-and-white photographs. The book also highlights the individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to the developing craft and design scene.

About the author

Originally from Nova Scotia, Gail Crawford has lived and worked in Ontario since 1959. She received her Master’s degree in History from the University of Toronto and has undertaken extensive research projects on a number of historical topics. A highly respected fine craft journalist, her articles have appeared in Fusion, Ontario Craft Magazine, Craftnews and other periodicals. She is also the author of A Fine Line: Studio Crafts in Ontario, 1930 to the Present, the first book of its kind in Canada. She was recently awarded the Ontario Crafts Council Critical Writing Award.

Gail Crawford's profile page

Editorial Reviews

Gail Crawford can write! While encyclopaedic in scope, this accessible history is a rich tapestry woven by a master wordsmith.

Fusion Magazine

We know so little about our forebears, or for that matter, our contemporaries. This book changes all that. A Fine Line is about to become the authoritative work in this field of interest.

Fusion Magazine

Crawford offers an interesting and highly detailed account of craft design and craft designers in Ontario, Canada, from the 1930s to the current era.


A Fine Line ... is thorough and insightful.


This easy-to-read history is well dotted with photographs of art objects and people. It traces the growth of organizations, provides profiles of artisans, and points out the importance of crafts in our culture.

Canadian Society of Decorative Arts Bulletin

Other titles by Gail Crawford