Ricardo Vilar, of Brazil, has been named a judge on the hit television show “Forged in Fire” Latin American Edition on History Channel. Vilar is a world-renowned bladesmith and an instructor at the University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana James Black School of Bladesmithing and Historic Trades.

Vilar began his professional career in 1993 and became a licensed Journeyman Smith with the American Bladesmith Society in 2005. He served as the president of the Brazilian Society of Cutlers from 2003 to 2008, is a co-founder of a cutlery school in partnership with the University of Brasilia, and was invited by the University of Texas in 2005 to be a Brazilian style instructor at the Hammer-in Fall. In 2010, he was the coordinator and teacher of a cutlery course for Corneta Tools in Osasco, Brazil, where he taught more than two hundred students. In 2011, one of his knives was adopted as the official knife of the Brazilian Parachute Brigade. Some of his recent awards include Best Field Knife IV, Best Tactical Knife IV, Best Industrial Knife IV, and Best Knife Bush Craft IV at the 2015 International Cutlery Show.

Vilar will teach a Hunting Knife Class at the James Black School on April 20-23 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. In the intensive 4-day class, students will learn to forge a carbon steel blade, heat treat metal, fashion a wooden handle and brass guard, and sharpen a knife. Each student will forge a completed hunting knife. The price for the course is $450.

The UAHT James Black School of Bladesmithing and Historic Trades also offers a Certificate of Proficiency in Bladesmithing degree that is designed to provide students with the unique opportunity to earn a degree in the historic art of bladesmithing. Courses in the credit program include Introduction to Bladesmithing, Intermediate Bladesmithing, Knifemaking, Handles and Guards, Damascus Steel, and Advanced Bladesmithing.

Upcoming Courses:

  • Handles and Guards – April 3-5 and April 10-12
  • Hunting Knife – April 20-23
  • Advanced Forged Belt Axe – May 7-9
  • Historic Pattern Tong Making – May 15-16
  • Basic Forged Axe – June 18-20

To learn more or to register for classes, visit www.uaht.edu/bladesmithing, email , or call 870.722.8568.

Ricardo Vilar