February 2018



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2018 Wharton Esherick Museum Competition

The Wharton Esherick Museum has announced the theme for this year's annual woodturning competition: The Stool. Through the annual woodworking competition, the Museum encourages resourceful, innovative thinking that will result in objects that surprise and delight. According to the Museum's website, Wharton Esherick's three-legged stools are some of his most iconic pieces. In the 1950s, Wharton began forming scraps of wood whose grain was too interesting to burn as firewood, into the seats of stools. No two were exactly the same; he shaped and sculpted each seat to whatever form the wood grain suggested, always keeping comfort in mind. So, to celebrate 25 years of the Woodworking Competition, they are revisiting the challenge of the stool. While Wharton may have considered his three-legged stools "bread and butter" pieces, each one was a unique work of functional art.

Call for entries: Design in Wood Exhibition

Online entries for the 2018 Design in Wood exhibition opens in mid-February with an entry delivery day of Tuesday, May 22, 2018. This international exhibition of fine woodworking, sponsored by the San Diego Fine Woodworkers Association, is held at the annual San Diego County Fair in Del Mar, CA . As in previous years, there are four different categories in the woodturning division:

Ornament Challenge Update

The results of the 2017 As Wood Turns Ornament Challenge are now posted on the As Wood Turns website. Click here to see all the video submissions for last year.

TV's Handcrafted America features pen maker

A recent episode of the new television series called "Handcrafted America" featured the work of pen maker Tom Gauntt. The episode showed how Tom made a driftwood and sea glass-inspired pen using materials he collected during a walk on a nearby beach on the Chesapeake Bay. Tom filled the defects in the driftwood with epoxy resin, dyeing it to look like the sea glass that he finds on his walks. From the Handcrafted America website: "Tom picked up a piece of driftwood, noticing the black veins running through the creamy colored wood. Inspiration struck and he dragged the waterlogged piece back to dry, and as he says, 'just see if something beautiful was inside.' Something beautiful was most definitely inside as the dark spalting of the decay process contrasted with the creamy color of the wood. The result was a visually striking and completely unique hand-turned pen."

Opportunities for Educators

Did you know that the Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts provides educator scholarships? Arrowmont supplies 50% of workshop tuition for one workshop per educator per year. These scholarships are open to any educator regardless of discipline/skill level. All of the following are eligible: K-12, technical school, community college, college and university faculty. There are no application deadlines--applications are rolling, based on class availability.

Folk School open for 2018 registration

Registration is now open for the 2018 season at the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC. This year, the school is offering 56 different woodturning classes! Instructors will include Kimberly Winkle, Andy Gunning, Rudy Lopez, Nick Cook, Kurt Hertzog, Harvey Meyer, and many more. Visit the school's website at for more information.

Legendary woodworker passes on

Wendell Castle, often referred to as the father of the art furniture movement, died January 20, 2018 at 85. "His bold and graceful pieces, often organic, and sometimes whimsical, are crafted from rare and beautiful hardwoods, plastics, veneers, and metals in a timeless contemporary style. His expression of color and exotic materials are synonymous with the Wendell Castle name" (from Wendell Castle's website). Click here to view a fascinating video segment in which Castle discusses his creative process with American furniture historian and author Oscar Fitzgerald. It is from a Popular Woodworking DVD/video download titled "Woodworking Legends: An Interview with Wendell Castle". (Photo above is from the Popular Woodworking DVD cover).

Top 20 Most-Viewed New Woodturning Videos for January 2018

Rick Morris has created the list of the top twenty most-viewed woodturning videos from January 2018.

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