Jere is a full-time studio craftsman whose work has appeared in many major museums. He has been designing and building furniture since 1957 and taught furniture making at Boston University's Program in Artlsanry and at Rochester Institute of Technology's School for American Craftsmen.
He is best known for his pioneering work in bent lamination.
Ellipse II desk
Bubinga, wenge, curly maple
The solid, elliptical shell of this desk consists of 3/8-in.-thick, coopered staves of laminated bubinga. The tapered\ laminated legs are intended to resemble the roots of a tree. The pigeonholes inside the desk are curly maple.
l*tOK> BY WAN POWlU
"A good design is one that has a balance—of shapes, forms, volumes, color— even sound. The proportions of a completed piece of furniture are only an elaboration of the principle of balance. A good design will also hold your interest—you'll like it again each time you see it. In fact, you'll probably see something new in it each time.
"The other aspect of design is communication. If you have something interesting to say. you can get it across through your design. You can give a piece of furniture life and spirit—a part of yourself. I don't regard it as personal expression when you merely assemble parts from pieces others have made. But I also like traditional furniture. It's familiar and has strong associative values.
"It's important not to confuse design with technique. Techniques deal with logic and traditional assembly systems—with joints, glues, and woods. Designing has to do with the spirit of a piece. It's rushing up to a corner, looking around it and seeing a new form for the first time.
"If you want to design, I recommend you keep a sketchbook. It's very important to train yourself to see—patterns, images, light, dark, positive and negative forms.
"Furniture design reveals itself to us in three stages. The first stage—your first impression of the piece when you see it from a distance—is very important. You sec the silhouette and the positive and negative areas of the form. In the second stage, as you move closer, you see the color, texture, and surface quality. You see more of the form and get an understanding of the volume. Finally, in the third stage, you arc too close to sec the form. Instead, you see the fine details—carving, inlay, joinery—and how they add up to the finished piece."
Osgood considers this desk to be one of his cleanest "pure lamination" designs. All the wooden parts were made with laminating techniques he develofied.
PHOTO BY DtAN POWtU
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