Tool companies shower awards on talented young furnituremakers

comments (2) September 17th, 2011 in blogs

AsaC AsaC, Contributor
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Awards for Regeneration: Fine Woodworkers Under 30 were handed out Friday night at the picturesque Center for Furniture Craftsmanship, in Rockport, Maine.
Best in Show went to Russell Gale of Asheville, N.C., for this sideboard in black limba wood, with custom brass hardware.
The award for a piece inspired by traditional furniture went to this beautifully carved and veneered room screen by Virginia Blanchard of Pelham, N.Y., a former student in the nine-month program at the school.
The award for turnings went to this maple and walnut segmented vessel by Bryan Klotz of Brooklyn, N.Y.
We gave out a special Fine Woodworking award for craftsmanship to this white oak cabinet with scalloped doors and shelves, built by Nate Blaisdell of Somerville, Maine.
Eric Oransky of Freeport, Maine, built this gorgeous Hepplewhite chest of drawers in mahogany, avodire, and poplar.
Building by building, CFC director Peter Korn has created a full woodworking campus, complete with its own gallery, in picturesque Rockport, Maine.
I snooped into the workshop building, where a class was being held on curved work. See the bent laminations on the benches.
Every building has its own big, state-of-the-art machine room.
Six studio fellows share the 5,400-square-foot Thomas Miller  Jackson Building, getting free 24-hour access to the facilities for several weeks or months in exchange for 6 hours/week of work for the school.
Awards for Regeneration: Fine Woodworkers Under 30 were handed out Friday night at the picturesque Center for Furniture Craftsmanship, in Rockport, Maine. - CLICK TO ENLARGE

Awards for "Regeneration: Fine Woodworkers Under 30" were handed out Friday night at the picturesque Center for Furniture Craftsmanship, in Rockport, Maine.

Photo: courtesy of CFC

I traveled up to Main this week to shoot pictures of Shaker furniture at Sabbathday Shaker Village, timing my trip for the opening of Regeneration: Fine Woodworkers Under 30, at the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship in Rockport. I had never been to the school before, but I've met its founder and director, Peter Korn, many times and already had a wonderful impression of his school. I left even more impressed. Peter has put together a wonderful woodworking campus, with separate, beautifully outfitted buildings for his short-term workshops, nine-month intensives, and special fellowships, which allow talented artists the time and space to collaborate or explore new avenues on their own. There is also a serious gallery on campus, with a wide variety of shows each year, many based on the work of the CFC's hundreds of students and dozens of faculty members.

I took the time to snoop into every building, and saw great work happening in each one, and a wonderful spririt of comraderie between everyone from weekend warriors to acclaimed artists, many taking the time to tell me how happy they were with their experience at CFC. So I highly recommend this school, whether you plan on going pro or are an amateur, like me, who wants to take his or her skills to the highest level.

Peter called me last year with the idea for Regeneration, and I was all for it. We publicized it in the magazine, and Peter lined up the sponsors, who ended up paying $18,000 to cover all the shipping involved! And manufacturers like Powermatic/Jet, Festool, and others lined up to offer many thousands of dollars more in high-end tools and machinery for the winners.

Woodworkers as a whole are getting greyer by the minute, so I must admit I was suprised when 400 entries rolled in, from 250 woodworkers. It was very tough to get by the jury and make it into the actual exhibit, and the show I saw in the Messler Gallery last night was one of the best I've seen. It's deeply gratifying to see younger men and women with so much talent and passion for the craft.

We'll feature a number of the winners in an upcoming issue of the magazine.

posted in: blogs, table, chair, cabinet, desk, chest, chest of drawers

Comments (2)

AsaC AsaC writes: Weekend workshops are great, too, and the best teachers tend to travel the country. I'll bet there are some great workshops near you. There are schools all over, Woodcraft stores hold lots of short classes, and there are also classes at local woodworking clubs and guilds. Go to our community page:
and scroll down to find links to lots of clubs, schools, and events. If you strike out, e-mail me at, and I'll help you find something.
Posted: 8:08 pm on September 18th

woodhouse94 woodhouse94 writes: I wish i could attend the school once i am out of high school, but it doesn't seem like it will happen, but if not now then maybe down the road after working for a few years.
Posted: 6:37 pm on September 18th

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