Segments in this Video

Plasterer (07:41)


Earl Barthe is a fifth-generation craftsman. His 150-year old company dates back to the 1850s and specializes in reproducing traditional plaster for historical buildings in New Orleans including the Saint Louis Cathedral. Plaster swells as it dries so work must be completed quickly.

Glass Tradesman (07:32)

Windows generate different emotions over a 24 hour period. Dieter Goldkuhle works with a number of artists to create and restore stained glass including the Washington National Cathedral. The craft only comes through repetition until it becomes second nature; leaded glass forms buckles over time.

Stone Carver (10:11)

Nick Benson is a third-generation carver and specializes in inscriptions for public buildings, memorials, and monuments, including the National World War II Memorial. The John Stevens Shop based out of Newport, Rhode Island both designs and carves the lettering. The craftsman describes how his tool and process depends on the medium.

Decorative Painting (05:51)

John Canning and Jacqueline Canning-Riccio work at Trinity Church to restore the tower artwork originally designed by Henry Hobson Richardson. La Farge red is the color theme. Canning describes his upbringing in Glasgow and goals for his work.

Terra Cotta Specialist (07:07)

Gladding McBean is a ceramics company located in Lincoln that supplied sewer pipes to San Francisco. Philip "Pete" Pederson works on restoring facades for the Carson Pirie Scott Building in Chicago. The drafting department takes measurements and creates a replica; Humberto Mirando hand rolls the clay to remove air pockets.

Stone Mason (07:43)

Joe Alonso has worked at the Washington National Cathedral restoring the craftsmanship of generations of masons and carvers. Lead buttons are used to maintain the quarter-inch thickness between the stones. Humoring the stone means to keep joints a little tighter than specified.

Blacksmith (04:58)

There is nothing more magical as forging and transforming hot metal. Patrick Cardine specializes in designing and crafting hand-forged architectural ironwork. Drawing in full scale helps bring out creativity; skill level is directly related to speed.

Brick Maker (09:07)

Albert Parra builds adobe and is based out of Albuquerque; See footage of him plastering the Morada, a chapel and meeting place for the Penitente Brotherhood. His team includes Charles Carrillo and Dexter Trujillo. Straw acts as binder for clay and wicks away water.

Artisan Legacy (02:45)

Artisans place their mark where it cannot be seen by the public. Craftsmen discuss passing on their knowledge to future generations and the satisfaction gained from completing a project.

Credits: Good Work: Masters of the Building Arts (01:31)

Credits: Good Work: Masters of the Building Arts

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Good Work: Masters of the Building Arts

3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



This documentary celebrates American craftsmanship and the unsung artisans (stone carvers, stained glass artisans, metalsmiths, plasterers, stone masons, decorative painters, and adobe workers) who create and preserve America's iconic buildings. The film documents the men and women working behind the scenes to bring enduring beauty to the built environment.

Length: 66 minutes

Item#: FMK191953

Copyright date: ©2018

Closed Captioned

Performance Rights

Prices include public performance rights.

Not available to Home Video, Dealer and Publisher customers.

Only available in USA and Canada.