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Expressive Idaho: Forging steel into art

Susan Madasci in her studio, Garden City, ID.
Arlie Sommer
Idaho Commission on the Arts
Susan Madacsi in her studio.

When you hear the word "blacksmith," you might think of horseshoes and iron fences. Traditional practitioners forged hand tools, kitchenware and jewelry.

Today, industrial forgery is used in things like hardware, automobiles, even spaceships. But it’s also used for landscaping, architecture and art. Blacksmith Susan Madacsi designs large-scale steel sculptures, forging each part at temperatures of around 2,200 degrees, then adding texture with a hammer or other tools.

Colorful and geometric, her contemporary forged artwork hangs in public spaces throughout Idaho and around the world. Arlie Sommer brings us her story as part of the Expressive Idaho series.

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