Pro Portfolio: Michael Hurwitz: Planks into Poetry
Philadelphia furniture maker Michael Hurwitz is one of the most talented designer/makers currently working. In this slide show he discusses a selection of pieces he’s made over the past thirty years.
Hurwitz grew up in the suburbs of Boston and after considering a career building traditional stringed instruments, he studied furniture making under Jere Osgood and Alphonse Mattia at Boston University’s Program in Artisanry. Since the mid-1980s he’s been living and working in Philadelphia, where he headed the wood program at the University of the Arts.
An attraction to Japanese craft and building has led Hurwitz to travel to Japan many times, and his own aesthetic is deeply connected with what he has seen and admired there. Hurwitz also has an appetite for exploration across a broad range of materials and crafts both ancient and innovative. He has collaborated with a number of traditional Japanese craftsmen, including experts in urushi lacquer, bamboo weaving, and metalwork. All these experiences have left their mark on his furniture.
More on Michael Hurwitz: One of his display cabinet is featured on the back cover of the latest issue of Fine Woodworking: The Grillwork Grabbed Him. Read the article, Grilled to Perfection for more details on how he made the cabinet. His cracked-ice cabinet also landed on the back cover of the magazine when it was featured in an exhibition, Inspired By China, at the Peabody Essex Museum. Click here to learn more in an audio slideshow.