MoTC – James Krenov: Virtuoso in Words and Wood
A fascinating interview with the icon, looking back at his life from childhood on through to his professional life
*Web Producer’s Note – The slide show player we used on the old site doesn’t agree with the new site. So Jon Binzen and I have set forth updating and converting the slide shows to future-proof them. While this is time consuming, it does give us an opportunity to resurface some of these incredible glimpses into the work and minds of the world’s finest furniture makers. With the College of the Redwoods Fine Furniture program changing its name to the Krenov School, the next release seemed obvious to us. We hope you enjoy it as much today as when it was originally released in September of 2009. -Ben Strano
James Krenov, who died at age 88 on September 9th, was one of the most influential furniture makers 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 furniture making 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 United States in the ’70s and settling on the coast in Ft. Bragg, Calif.