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Gary Rogowski

Gary Rogowski

Gary Rogowski is a furniture maker. After picking up his degree in literature in 1974 he found an old wooden transition plane and a chunk of fir outside his house. He wondered what he could do with these things. Fifty years later he is known internationally as a teacher, lecturer, author, and designer. He started showing work in galleries in the late 70s in Oregon and then nationwide, making custom furniture for public and private commissions for 25 years including Taunton Press, Oregon State Archives, and Temple Beth Israel. His work was shown in the 1989 Biennial Art Festival at the Portland Art Museum. In 1991, he won the Oregon Arts Fellowship in Crafts.

Gary was a contributing editor for Fine Woodworking magazine for fourteen years, with numerous articles, videos, and two books on woodworking including The Complete Illustrated Guide to Joinery, (Taunton Press, 2002) His latest book is called Handmade: Creative Focus in the Age of Distraction, (Linden Press, 2017). It is a narrative on creativity and practice, on the value of failure and forgiveness in our work. In this time of attention disorder, the book argues that for individuals and for societies to remain creative, we must stay engaged with the physical world as a means of thinking more clearly.

As a teacher, Gary focuses on traditional hand tool techniques but emphasizes contemporary design strategies. This combination offers his students tremendous creative leeway as well as the skills to build these designs. 

His podcast, Splinters, can be found on all the major podcast providers.


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