The Woodschool Blog
Now in their final week, the Twelve-week Intensive students are eager to make as much progress as possible on their curvature projects. After extensive demonstrations on steam bending, lamination bending, and veneering, a final wave of energy has taken over the shop as the students incorporate these complex building techniques into their work. The positive attitude and tireless work ethic of this group of students permeated throughout campus over the last three months. We will miss them, but we're also excited to see where they go from here!
“Contemporary Wood Design,” a national exhibition showcasing a new generation of furniture makers, is open to the public at the Messler Gallery through January 6.
The exhibition was co-curated by Diana Budds, formerly senior editor at Dwell, and Asher Dunn, founder of StudioDunn in Providence, RI. A young furniture designer himself, Dunn notes that success today requires an arsenal of skills in addition to craftsmanship. “You have to stay on top of continually changing disciplines and trends in design, entrepreneurship, marketing, sales, and much more.”
Although it's Christmas vacation week, a few students from both the Nine-month Comprehensive and the Twelve-week Intensive are in the shop, working hard to finish their casepiece projects over the holiday. The only requirement for the project is to include at least one door and one drawer, essential skills for a furniture maker. This project allows students to push their design skills, and start to develop their personal aesthetics. Simultaneously, it tests their understanding of construction and their discipline in technical execution.
During the first three weeks of the Nine-month Comprehensive, students hone their skills with hand tools like chisels, planes, and marking gauges. After a bit of practice, they design and build a bench with dovetails and mortise and tenon joinery. From such a simple brief, the current Nine-month students have created a remarkably diverse array of work, providing us a small sample of the creativity to come this year.
Photos by Mark Juliana
For many furniture makers, a chair is the perfect vehicle for exploring the relationship between form and function. A chair requires ergonomic comfort and must be engineered to bear weight and movement. It necessitates a deep knowledge of joinery and the limits of wood as a medium. It has a rich and expansive design history, and is thus open to infinite manifestations of style and character. This dichotomy between what a chair needs to do and what it could be makes it the most challenging piece of furniture to create. It is also the most fun.
More Articles ...
- Meet Dave Messmer: Student, Studio Fellow, Shop Assistant
- Mastering Veneered Boxes
- Final Days of the Summer Twelve-week Intensive
- Sarah Marriage Awarded Mineck Fellowship
- Precision with Hand Tools with Garrett Hack
- Current Work in the Studio Fellowship
- 2015 Open House
- Progress in the Twelve-week Turning course
- Winter Potluck
- Beautility at the Messler Gallery