Designing the Future. Fuller Craft Museum at Brockton, Massachusetts

Designing the Future. Fuller Craft Museum at Brockton, Massachusetts
Yareah Magazine

Designing the Future at Brockton, Massachusetts. Fuller Craft Museum, New England’s home for contemporary craft. Sunday, February 9, 12:00 pm.


Speaking of Furniture. Book cover

Join us for a big closing day celebration of Made in Massachusetts: Studio Furniture of the Bay State with speaker Rosanne Somerson, Interim President of RISD, whose work is also featured in the exhibition. This day marks 2 coups for the world of studio furniture (1) furniture maker Rosanne Somerson’s new appointment as interim President of the Rhode Island School of Design and (2) the new release of the landmark book, Speaking of Furniture, which interviews 14 American master furniture makers.

About Rosanne Somerson:

Rosanne Somerson is a furniture designer/maker, educator, and RISD’s interim President. She simultaneously maintains a robust creative practice, designing and creating furniture for exhibitions and commissions. Additionally, she consults on innovative educational and creative practice for institutions and industry. Her work has been exhibited widely throughout the world and is represented in many prestigious private, corporate, and museum collections, including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Renwick Collection of the National Museum of American Art, Washington, DC, the Yale University Art Gallery, the Huntsville Museum of Art, and the RISD Museum of Art. She has served on the boards of the Haystack Mountain School in Maine and the Society of Arts and Crafts in Boston, is a named Fellow of the American Craft Council, and is the subject of an interview that forms part of the Smithsonian Institute Archives of American Art Oral History Program. As a sought-after international lecturer, juror, exhibitor, and evaluator, she applies both local and global perspectives to her work. She has received numerous awards and citations for her work as a designer, artist, and teacher, most recently the Award of Distinction for lifetime achievement in the field of studio furniture by the Furniture Society.


Rosanne Somerson, Artist and Interim President of Rhode Island School of Design

About the Book Speaking of Furniture: Conversations with 14 American Masters. 12:00 pm Talk by publisher Bebe Pritam Johnson & book signing.

Speaking of Furniture: Conversations with 14 American Masters, Preface by Bebe Pritam Johnson and Warren Eames Johnson. Forward by Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Introduction by Roger Holmes.

An engaging history and examination of the studio furniture movement, Speaking of Furniture: Conversations with 14 American Masters is an informative, firsthand presentation of the creative processes of 14 diverse and highly accomplished artisan furniture makers: James Krenov, Wendell Castle, Jere Osgood, Judy Kensley McKie, David Ebner, Richard Scott Newman, Hank Gilpin, Alphonse Mattia, John Dunnigan, Wendy Maruyama, James Schriber, Timothy S. Philbrick, Michael Hurwitz, and Thomas Hucker. Through insightful and wide-ranging interviews, each describes his or her evolution as a furniture maker and reveals a uniquely personal approach to a craft characterized by its delicate and vital balance of concept and functionality.

The day’s schedule:

12:00 pm Speaking of Furniture book signing and talk by publisher Bebe Pritam Johnson.

2:00 pm Designing the Future talk by Rosanne Somerson (right), Interim President of Rhode Island School of Design.

Members $7 Nonmembers $15 Call 508.588.6000 to reserve your seat today.

1:00 pm – 4:00 pm also happens to be our public reception for our “Machines and Mechanizations” and “SMARTS” exhibitions.

Designing the Future.

2:00 pm Rosanne Somerson.

Designing the Future Massachusetts has been a center for furniture making and innovation since the colonial days. As this exhibition aptly demonstrates, the Commonwealth retains a wealth of expert designer/makers. As a final closing event to Made in Massachusetts: Studio Furniture of the Bay State, President Somerson, an exhibitor, presents some of the themes and opportunities that contemporary studio furniture makers explore as they look toward the future of design, craft, and technology. Ms. Somerson is the co-editor, along with Mara Hermano, of The Art of Critical Making: Rhode Island School of Design on Creative Practice. Her talk will include a discussion of what elements inherent in studio practice advance innovation and creative exploration. Please join us for her presentation, which will be followed by a question and answer discussion.

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