Modern Lithic Art
Flintknappers today take on the challenge of the craft as as a research tool, a hobby, a means of making money, or for a combination of these reasons.
Flintknapping researchers learn and apply their skills as a method for understanding the long prehistory of tool-making. Most researchers are archaeologists, although non-academic flintknappers also contribute significantly to knowledge of traditional stoneworking techniques and methods. Serious researchers strive to replicate the steps used to make ancient stone tool types, not just the final form.
Flintknapping hobbyists engage in the craft for many reasons, but largely for the personal satisfaction of mastering a challenging technical activity and creating aesthetically-pleasing objects. Some hobbyists use traditional flintknapping tools to mimic tools like those from prehistory, while other hobbyists use modern metal flintknapping and lapidary tools to make fantasy objects with no ancient analogues. Most hobbyists fall in the middle of this spectrum and use metal tools to make familiar archaeological types from their home region. Hobbyist flintknappers are concentrated in North America and Europe, but the hobby is spreading through social media and YouTube ‘how to’ videos.