The Spoonmaker – Mark Tudose

Every time we have the occasion to pass by Sighișoara we eagerly stop. Our visits have become a ritual, each time we follow the same steps, we climb to the fortress and we get lost through narrow streets in the search of novelties. There is something magical about it, maybe about places, stories or people. It was impossible for us not to find what we were searching for. We met a man, a story and a place, but what is next, remains to be seen.
His name is Mark Tudose and he came from Bucharest to Sighișoara to tell us stories, but not any kind of stories, but stories about luck, love, wisdom, beauty, power and safety. His stories are not written, but engraved in wood, and while you listen to them, it catches the shape of a spoon.

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Mark Tudose is known on 4 continents under the Spoonman nickname, and rightly, he doesn’t create only spoons, but stories – ”anything from this world that doesn’t have a story isn’t finished, is incomplete”. Each spoon has engraved on its tail a symbol that is related to a romanian traditional story: either about wisdom represented by an owl, about power represented by the snake symbol or about luck represented by the stork.

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We filmed the documentary in the beginning of July 2013. We were warmly welcomed by lots of stories, stories about life, love, craft, enthusiasm, sacrifices and even marketing. Each corner of the house was sprinkled with sawdust and all sorts of tools. He enthusiastically engraves the wood anytime and anywhere. He started to engrave in Sighișoara’s fortress, under the eyes of people who passed by, but his stories made him unquestionably to get noticed.

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The workshop is 7 minutes away from Sighișoara, in Țopa village. There we found a silence oasis in an authentical romanian house built out of soil. The little house is truly a treasure, furnished traditionally, objects, photographs and old documents that date back in 1800s and even traditional clothing kept carefully in the closet. The workspace is next to the window where the tools created by Mark and his grandfather, finished and unfinished spoons, all waiting to be exposed in his gallery in Sighișoara. The filming lasted about…10 spoons. With one eye I was looking in the camera and the other one at his hands, listening carefully to Mark’s stories. It was incredible to see how quick he engraved the wood.

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What I appreciated about Mark Tudose is the fact that beside being an exquisite craftman, he is also a very good speaker, full of imagination and extremely creative. He believes in the continuity of romanian craft and wishes to promote it together with his wife who shares this passion with him.

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“Doing something from sheer pleasure and passion at some point you don’t feel you work. You simply do it.”
We thank to Tudose’s talented family for the time dedicated to accomplish the documentary and for the stories shared during filming!

Story written by: Brîndușa Inocan