A collector, a scrounger, a hole digger, a woodcarver: Aaron Margolis (he/him/his) is a native New Yorker who has resided in Maine since 2011. A professional woodworker for 17 years, he makes functional, sculptural, and structural objects in his rural Downeast studio. Aaron thoroughly enjoys experimenting with bygone production techniques and found, discarded materials in his work, and fosters curiosity in others by teaching handtool woodcarving workshops. In previous years, he co-owned a fine craft gallery, designed and constructed an off the grid octagonal timberframed house, and built steel bicycle frames using partially scavenged materials. He is a self-taught craftsperson and sculptor, and his notions about craft and work were fostered by the DIY punk scene of NYC. He is cognizant of the imperfection of the materials with which he works, and in his own human ability as the creator of these objects.
Deirdre McGrath (she/her/hers), also a native New Yorker, is an art-school dropout with a background in traditional printmaking and studio photography, and is currently pursuing a degree in anthropology with a focus on archaeology, material culture, and traditional folk arts. She is interested in the intersection of traditional handcraft, the innovation of marginalized peoples, colonization/displacement, and social justice as found in the material record.
Together, they have been working as Rusted Pulchritude since 2014.
Photos by: Jenn Bakos
Fellowships and Grants
2020: Aaron was selected as a recipient of the Maine Artist Fellowship Award provided by the Maine Arts Commission, an independent state agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.
· June-Sept 2018 "Lost Art of Handiwork" Museum L-A · Lewiston, ME
· July 2018 "Construction/Deconstruction" The Harlow · Hallowell, ME
· Winter 2021 · Interview with Spoonesaurus Magazine
· July 2020 · Interview with Daniel Marcou of Wooden Spoon Carving
· May/June 2020 · Creative Maine
· March 2020 · The Republican Journal · Belfast, ME
· Dec 2018 · New England Makers: Rusted Pulchritude · t.e.l.l. New England
· Jan 2018 · The Ellsworth American
Giving Back: Where do we donate?
Somali Bantu Community Association of Maine
Families First Community Center - Homeless Shelter
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