Cambria Iron Conference

CforMA Conference 2023

Inspired by the Past – Forging to the Future

September 21, 2024 | Center for Metal Arts, Johnstown PA

The Cambria Iron Conference is an event held at Center for Metal Arts in the historic Cambria Iron and Steel Blacksmith shop.

Our mission for this space is to make it available for the greater forging community to use as well as appreciate and this annual conference is our first major effort towards that goal. Lots of care and consideration goes into our demonstrator selection process with focus always on safety professionalism. Secondary to that and at the core of what we are trying to accomplish for that space is to facilitate creative large-scale forging.

We hope you will join us this year to celebrate this shop’s new life and all of the restoration work CMA has embarked on. It’s very exciting to see what all the different sculptors have created in response to the forging possibilities here and the beautiful historically significant environment that is Johnstown, PA. Come join us during our annual gathering to meet and interact with blacksmiths of all walks of life and backgrounds and experience a new artist's interpretation of “industrial arts” in a true sense of the words.

Featured Demonstrator: Christoph Friedrich

Every year CMA invites a qualified blacksmith we look up to and admire to be our conference demonstrator. We are thrilled beyond belief this year to be hosting Christoph Friedrich from Switzerland to be both the demonstrator and Collaborative Sculpture instructor.

“I have always admired Christoph’s work and have looked up to him as a sculptor and smith. Throughout my career I have had the privilege of spending time with him personally and getting to know more about his thought process and practice. I am incredibly excited he accepted our invitation and will be added to the cannon of talented contemporary smiths to work in the octagon and help breathe new life into this space. Ever since our move to Johnstown I have always felt like Christoph would be a great candidate to work under the large-scale hammers in the octagon and I'm incredibly proud that were at a point in our development where we can make this a reality.” - Patrick Quinn

Christoph Friedrich

For over 50 years I have succumbed to the iron. During my basic training as a craftsman, I got to know different […]

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2024 Conference Tour Series

September 21, 2024 | Center for Metal Arts, Johnstown PA

CforMA Conference 2023

Join us Saturday, September 21st for the Cambria Iron Conference Tours. The tours will run alongside CMA’s third annual Cambria Iron Conference. Johnstown residents and the greater community will have the opportunity to experience a little piece of Johnstown’s rich industrial heritage. Tours will take place on CMA’s campus, 106 Iron Street, Johnstown, PA 15906. There will be two tours offered. Each tour will begin promptly at the time you select when you register, so please arrive a few minutes early to get situated. The tour will last approximately 1-1.5 hours.

The tour will include three demonstrations, two buildings, and the history of the Cambria Iron historic landmark.  Participants will get to experience the 3,000LB Chambersburg power hammer in action, one of the remaining large industrial hammers left inside the blacksmith shop, being used to forge sculpture with featured demonstrator Christoph Friedrich. Inside the Pattern shop there will be additional metal forging demonstrations.

After the tour, participants will be encouraged to check out the exhibition on display. The conference exhibition, from Core to Surface, a national juried exhibition showcasing contemporary forged work will be on campus at 102 Iron Street.

***Earplugs will be provided. It is highly recommended that each tour participant brings their own eye protection. Eye protection will be available to borrow if needed.

Schedule

September 21, 2024 (Schedule Subject to Change)

8:30 AM   – Opening remarks (Introduction & brief history of the Cambria Iron Company and Blacksmith Shop)

9:00 AM   – Demonstration begins (in Historic Blacksmith Shop)

12:00 PM   – Lunch break

1:00 PM   – Demonstration resumes

5:00 PM   – Demonstration ends

6:00 PM   – After party

8:00 PM   – CMA on campus facilities and buildings will be closed   

* After Party is BYOB and CMA fully expects all attendees to drink responsibly.

*Open Alcohol containers not permitted on site until 5:00 PM

CforMA Conference 2023
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from Core to Surface 2023

An exhibition of current forged metalwork showcasing the vast possibilities of design, technique, and self-expression through the lens of the forging process. Forging can be both incredibly technical and self-expressive. The combination of the two is what makes it such an exciting process for both artists and craftspeople working in the field today.

The mission of this exhibition is to showcase the broad range of what forging can offer from a sculptural and functional perspective or a combination of the two. Design and execution go hand-in-hand whether the work is functional or sculptural; the two concepts struggle to exist independently. This exhibition seeks people active in the craft whose work displays a keen sense of design and technique. Evaluation and acceptance of submissions will be strongly influenced by a demonstration of this harmony between the two in their work.

Join Us

Get inspired, learn new skills, and keep the forging tradition alive. Registration for the 2024 Cambria Iron Conference coming soon.

Cambria Iron Conference 2023 Gallery

Photos by Adliv Collective

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