Martin Rumack - Canadian Crafting Legend, Lawyer and a Founding Member of One of a Kind Show To Be Honoured During Opening Night Hall of Fame and 40th Anniversary Event

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This year marks 40th anniversary of one of the greatest craft and art shows in Canadian history. Martin Rumack will be honoured at this year's 40th Anniversary Event.

The One of a Kind Canadian Craft Show - 40th Anniversary Event

  • Thursday November 27, 2014
  • Direct Energy Centre, Exhibition Place, Toronto
  • 6:00 PM

The Canadian Craft Show resulted from a casual get together of a hippy jeweller, a young inexperienced (at the time) lawyer, and a long-haired social work student. The root of the idea resulted from the fact the jeweller, who was from Montréal, talked to the lawyer (Martin Rumack) and the social work student about a successful Craft Show, which had been in existence in Montréal for several years at that time, and she believed Toronto was ready for, needed and would support a similar type of exhibition and sale. During the course of the meeting having some “refreshments” in their bodies, they decided to proceed with the idea and the Canadian Craft show seed was germinated.

Over the course of approximately 3 months, notwithstanding various turns in the road and hurdles to overcome, such as a national postal strike -- in the days before fax, emails, texting, Blackberry, etc., the initial refusal by Exhibition Place to rent the trio space – in the days before the International Convention Centre, the Toronto Convention Centre, were even built; with a very, very small budget – a grand total of $3,000.00; and not being known in the Craft and Art community, they were successful in providing a 7 day show and sale. As a matter of fact, the Saturday saw them inundated with a massive snowstorm, which severely impacted the attendance that day. The “success” of the first years show has resulted in one of the best craft and art shows and sales in North America and, in Martin's opinion, in the world as well.

With over 800 exhibitors from across Canada – coast-to-coast participation, having a 11 day event which attracts visitors from across Canada, the United States, and tourists in Toronto from around the world, Martin believes that the idea which started with the goal of promoting Canadian crafts and art has succeeded – certainly it has become something more than he ever expected even in his haze of that evening 40 years ago. The Canadian Craft Show has also achieved the objective of bringing together top quality artisans from across the country; this was why they called the show The Canadian Craft Show as opposed to the Toronto Craft Show or the Exhibition Place Craft Show. Another goal which has been achieved is Martin's goal of the show helping enable craftspeople and artists to be able to earn a sustainable living from their work which partly resulted from other goal of educating the public with respect to the value of the work created by Canadian artisans.

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Kara Wood

Martin Rumack
@MKIRumack
since: 11/2013
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