|PARKERSBURG, W. VA. – (September 2011) “Regeneration: Fine Woodworkers Under 30” competition winners were announced September 16 at opening ceremonies for the Messler Gallery juried exhibition that showcases 21 of the 277 entries. Russell Gale of Asheville, North Carolina, headed the list of seven winners, earning the Jurors’ Best in Show Award. Winners received prizes from woodworking tool vendors and suppliers, including Woodcraft.
The exhibition will continue through November 22 at the Messler Gallery and online at www.woodschool.org/wood-school-gallery/current-exhibitions. The Center for Furniture Craftsmanship in Rockport, Maine, home of the Messler Gallery, and Fine Woodworking magazine are competition co-hosts. Woodcraft provided a $20 gift coupon for each contest entrant and, along with Irwin Tools and the Rohlen Foundation, is providing free round-trip shipping to the Messler Gallery for exhibitors.
Winners and their category-specific prizes are: Jurors’ Best in Show Award, Russell Gale of Asheville, North Carolina ($1,500 tool package from Festool USA); Fine Woodworking Craftsmanship Award, Nate Blaisdell of Somerville, Maine (Powermatic 2800 18" variable-speed drill press or equivalent); People’s Choice Award, Phillip Leonard of LaGrange, Illinois (Jet 16" bandsaw or equivalent); First Place, Studio Furniture, George Dubinsky of Yardley, Pennsylvania (Jet JWP-160S 16" planer or equivalent); First Place, Traditionally-Inspired Furniture, Virginia Blanchard of Pelham, New York (Powermatic 719T Tilt Table Mortiser or equivalent); First Place, Boxes, Containers and Lighting, Brett MacLearnsberry of Poulsbo, Washington (Jet OES-80CS oscillating edge sander); and First Place, Turning/Sculpture, Bryan Klotz of Brooklyn, New York (Powermatic 14" bandsaw).
Each winner also received clamps from Irwin Tools, saw blades from Freud, compact routers from Porter-Cable, diamond honing stones from DMT, and $300 gift certificates from Lie-Nielsen Toolworks.
Professional woodworker Russell Gale’s winning entry, “The Garboard Strake”, is a sideboard with bandsawn veneers (black limba outside, Japanese ash inside), drawers featuring hand-cut dovetails, custom brass door and drawer drop pulls, and sassafras drawer interiors. The piece is for sale. “It is an incredible honor to receive the Jurors’ Best in Show for this piece,” Gale said. “I cannot tell you how much I appreciate the generous prizes from all the sponsors.” Gale is moving to a new shop in the Grovewood Studios at the Grovewood Gallery in Asheville. See more of his work at www.russellgale.com.
Phillip Leonard’s winning entry is one of six chairs he made for his parents. The chair is made of solid walnut with an upholstered seat and back and a bent lamination crest rail. A graduate of the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship’s Nine-month Comprehensive, Leonard is currently a student at Illinois State University and makes furniture in his home shop during the summer. “Winning the award was a great achievement for me. I was happy my piece was so well received by the viewers,” Leonard said. To see more of his work, visit www.phillipleonard.com.
Peter Korn, executive director of the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship, expressed satisfaction with the first-time competition: “The quality of the work on display is thrilling. Visitors to the exhibition are clearly awed by the creative talent of these under-30 woodworkers. We are tremendously grateful to Woodcraft and our other ‘Regeneration’ sponsors for their generous encouragement of young people who are entering the field.”
Exhibition winners will be featured in the Fine Woodworking Readers Gallery. All work in the exhibition will be permanently archived on the Messler Gallery’s Web page, and exhibitors have the option of selling their work.
For more information about “Regeneration,” contact Messler Gallery/Marketing Manager Victoria Allport at (207) 594-5611 or Messler Gallery.
Woodcraft Supply, LLC, is the industry leader in providing a wide variety of top quality products, educational opportunities and one-on-one guidance to woodworkers of all skill levels. For more information about Woodcraft, please contact the store nearest you, visit www.woodcraft.com or call (800) 535-4482. To learn about Woodcraft franchise opportunities, call (800) 344-3348, visit www.woodcraftfranchise.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.