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Craftsman portrait : Thomas Longuefosse - Cabinet maker

Through a video and photo reportage, I take you to discover the work of Thomas Longuefosse, multi-faceted and talented craftsman, who never stops discovering new practices and new worlds.

Indeed, Thomas does not confine himself to cabinet making in the strict meaning of the profession, involving only wood veneer work. Receptive to all that surrounds him, he constantly pushes his curiosity to take on new technical and creative challenges, and then integrate them into his creations.

The observation of new styles is for him as many new playgrounds to explore.

I particularly admire his patience and eclecticism. He welcomes all new ideas with enthusiasm and he emanates an inexhaustible creative energy that seems to push him constantly beyond his limits.

Watching him at work, I am also very touched by his natural sensitivity, which emerges even more when you hear him play piano or guitar.

With Thomas' creations, we go beyond simple manufacturing towards committed projects that are infinitely respectful of our surroundings.

He systematically walks the talk and transforms the faced constraints into new hope.

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The first thing that strikes me when I enter Thomas's workshop, are all the huge machines. Thousands of watts of power, hundreds of kilos of cast iron and steel, razor sharp blades. I share a mixed feeling of fear and admiration.

The machinery of a cabinet making workshop is definitely something impressive and somewhat frightening for those who are not used to these metal behemoths.

The apparent ease of the host obviously hides an unfailing concentration. Be careful not to get distracted as the slightest error of inattention could lead to serious consequences. The craftsman's hands being his primary tool, it is essential to ensure that they stay preserved.

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Just as fascinating but more secure to me are the various tools.

Many of these are handmade. A craft at the service of craftmanship, as reserved for insiders. Each chisel, gouge, rasp or file is made to meet a specific need and they all require regular maintenance to last and continue to provide service for, sometimes, the entire career of the craftsman, even over several generations.

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Extension of his hand, I watch Thomas manipulate his tools with incredible dexterity, in a fluid and controlled movement, as if it was instinctive.

This remind me the famous theory of ten thousand hours of practice required to excel in a particular technical or artistic field.

Without going that far, people who practice a musical instrument or a sport are well aware of the patience needed and the frustration felt when facing a technical obstacle that sometimes takes several months to overcome.

Courage and perseverance always inspire me admiration and respect.

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The final reward, the culmination of a long process punctuated by constraints and a saving optimism. The material comes to life to be transformed into furniture or fittings while respecting its origin.

Thomas' creations evoke a lot of serenity to me, his Nordic and Japanese influences are palpable. A subtle balance of geometric shapes assembled with elegance and sobriety.

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