James Krenov: Virtuoso in Words and Wood
James Krenov, who died at 88 on September 9th, was one of the most influential furnituremakers of the 20th century. His four books, beginning with A Cabinetmaker’s Notebook, became touchstones for many woodworkers and have sold nearly half a million copies. Krenov’s message was even more powerful in person, and the 23 spots in the College of the Redwoods furnituremaking program where Krenov taught for 25 years were competed for by people from across the country and around the world.
Born to Russian parents, Krenov lived in Alaska and Seattle as a boy. After World War II, he went to Sweden, where he studied under furniture designer Carl Malmsten, and met his wife, Britta. They lived in Stockholm for two decades, moving to the U.S. in the 70s and settling on the coast in Ft. Bragg, California.