Furniture Flashback: Wharton Escherick

Furniture Flashback: Wharton Escherick

Fifty-five years ago today, December 12, "The Furniture and Sculpture of Wharton Esherick," the first major retrospective for the artist, opened at the Museum of Contemporary Crafts in New York City. 

Esherick was a pioneer in crafting unique sculptural forms with wood, including furniture, functional objects, and commissioned works. The retrospective featured pieces created from 1938 to the 1950s, including some of Esherick's most recognizable cabinet, chair, and table designs.

The accompanying catalog documenting the exhibition contains an essay by curator Robert Laurer, a listing of works exhibited, and eight plates illustrating Esherick's home/studio and his works in collectors' residences. In a brief forward, museum director Thomas S. Tibbs astutely observes: "In design, his [Esherick's] work has often anticipated trends and has not divorced the esthetic from the utilitarian."

Throwback Thursday is a weekly series highlighting visuals from the American Craft Council Library's Digital Collections database. Check back on Thursdays for more.