Backbone believes that experience is the best teacher. We strive to maintain an assertive, open-ended pursuit of diverse projects to maximize the potential of skills and knowledge we can learn from them.
From time to time Backbone needs help with some of the heavy lifting involved with its projects. If you are committed to living a creative life and are interested in helping out in exchange for hands on experience, then Backbone is happy to share its knowledge with you.
Contact Backbone about possible intern opportunities.
Teaching is a rewarding practice for me as it refines my technical skills, strengthens my work ethics and makes me a better communicator.
Currently, I am an instructor in the Blacksmithing and Kinetics departments at the Crucible in Oakland. I also run workshops ranging from traditional forging to sculptural approaches in construction and consult on fabrication and installation processes.
Occasionally, I offer private classes.
Please contact me about how I might help you with your constructive efforts and creative goals.
Benjamin Carpenter is an interactive Artist/Fabricator/Teacher who works in the space between our industrial heritage and the forward momentum of contemporary media. His work is a meditation on life in the 21st century, the history that led to it and the future that lies ahead.
He began exploring his creativity as a child in New England building cardboard forts and various other contraptions with tools smuggled from his grandfather’s garage. Earning a B.F.A. in metal smithing and an M.F.A in Sculpture set the stage for a career building larger-scale architectural, kinetic and interactive projects.
Benjamin maintains an active role in the Oakland arts community by teaching at the industrial arts school, The Crucible and guest lecturing at the major art schools in the Bay Area.
He has shown his work locally, nationally and internationally. Backbone is the moniker under which he does commissioned work.
I am an interactive artist / fabricator / teacher who works in the space between our industrial heritage and the forward momentum of contemporary media.
My work is about making connections. It is a meditation on life in the 21st century, the history that led to it and the future that lies ahead.
I integrate digital video, sound, electronics, kinetics and creative coding with reclaimed, industrial materials to create tangible and audible experiences that anyone can absorb.
Backbone Fabrication was started in 2004 by Benjamin Carpenter to support an expensive art habit. It has since grown to provide custom service and creative solutions for those who appreciate the aesthetic, quality and value of hand-made work. Backbone now produces a wide spectrum of work ranging from architectural metalwork to marine fabrication to custom furniture.
We design and build:
Architectural: Railings, Gates, Fences, Room Dividers, Sconces, Lamps, Chandeliers, Custom Hardware, Architectural Supports, Wood Stoves Etc.
Marine: Railings, Support Brackets, Engine Mounts, Keels, Booms, Protective Cases, Anchor Mounts, Bulkhead Supports, Ladders, Etc.
Furniture: Tables, Chairs, Desks, Benches, Stools, Bed Frames, Cabinets, Shelving, Storage Space, Bars Etc.
Backbone also takes on fabrication work from other designers.
By integrating traditional techniques, re-claimed materials, contemporary aesthetics and sustainable methods, Backbone Fabrication offers unique, well-made work that is guaranteed to last a lifetime.
Five Ton Crane (5TC) is a diverse group of artists, geeks and inventors from the San Francisco Bay Area. The name implies the intention: 5TC does the heavy lifting that the individual artist couldn’t do on their own; by pooling resources, interests and talent to create opportunities for bigger, better and bolder Art. From giant projects like the Raygun Gothic Rocketship to individual blogging, group shows and private, client-based work… there is no job too big or too small that Five Ton Crane can’t lift to great heights.
As a founding member of 5TC, and as an individual artist, I am interested in creative collaborations especially with those experienced in the areas of programming and sound engineering. I am open to new ideas and welcome proposals for future schemes, endeavors and projects.