HIDA exhibit explores Japanese craft

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Tables by Christina M. Vincent

Tables by Christina M. Vincent

HIDA, A Woodwork Tradition in the Making”, opened Jan. 16 at the Japan House gallery in Los Angeles and will run through Apr. 12. The exhibition focuses on the heart of Japanese craftsmanship through artistry represented in traditional Hida woodcraft techniques and products from its forests, from contemporary chair designs to fragrant aroma oils.

According to the gallery, the Hida region is one of the most recognized places in Japan for woodworking traditions. Located in the center of the country in Gifu Prefecture, its wood crafting history began 1,300 years ago.

“The exhibition is organized around four core principles as embodied in the work of Hida Sangyo Co. Ltd., one of the oldest furniture manufacturers in Japan, founded in 1920. The central ideas include coexistence with the forest, consideration of inherent human needs, legacy cultivated through time, and continuous refinement of craft. Together, they have contributed to the rich history of woodcraft in the Hida region,” the gallery said in a statement.

For more, visit www.japanhouse.jp.

Maine Wood 2020

Maine Wood 2020 opened at the Messler Gallery at the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship in Rockport, Maine on Jan. 17 and will run through Apr. 8. The juried biennial exhibition showcases the breadth, creativity and excellence of Maine’s woodworking community. This year, the center received 76 submissions from 48 Maine artists and artisans.

“This is our seventh biennial and I’m happy to say that woodworking is thriving in Maine,” says Peter Korn, the center’s executive director.

 Federal gaming table by William Francis Brown.

 Federal gaming table by William Francis Brown.

Participating furniture makers include Nick Barboza of Hampden; David Boyle of Bath; William Francis Brown, Dev Flaherty and Osamu Sassa of Camden; Sam Cotton and Sayer G. Houseal of Rockport; Saer T. Huston of Kennebunkport; Heide Martin of Appleton; Jeffery Mazur of Boothbay; Daniel Monsees of Burnham; Kevin Rodel of Portland; Scott Stuart of Arrowsic; Clayton Thompson for Endeavour Craftsmen of Rockland, and Christina M. Vincent of North Haven.

Woodworkers, sculptors, carvers and turners include Steve Bartlett of Bath; Clara Cohan of Cape Elizabeth; Dennis Curtis of Augusta; William L. Janelle of Bridgton; George Partal of Bangor; Malcolm Ray of Damariscotta, and Chelsea Van Voorhis of Cushing.

Several of Maine’s leading craft associations co-sponsor Maine Wood, including the Maine Crafts Association, Maine Woodturners, and Maine Woodworkers Association.

Jurors include Heidi Earnshaw, a furniture maker in Toronto; Tom Huang, a designer/maker and Associate Professor of Design at the University of Kansas, and Jennifer Shirley, a woodturner and instructor from Plainfield, Ind.

For more, visit www.woodschool.org

This article originally appeared in the March 2020 issue.

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