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Wharton Esherick (18871970) lived to create. He found his true voice in sculpture, working primarily in local woods he gathered from the forest surrounding his home and studio in rural Pennsylvania. The spiritual father of the contemporary studio furniture movement in America, he pioneered the way for successive generations of woodworking artists to develop their original designs. His work blurs the traditional distinctions between sculpture and furniture, form and function. Wharton Esherick: The Journey of a Creative Mindis the first and only comprehensive look at the colorful life and work of this seminal artist. Written by Esherick's son-in-law, and lavishly illustrated, it features photographs of Esherick's most important artworks as well as the woodland studio he designed, built, and furnished over the course of several decades. Now a museum, preserved as Esherick left it, this remarkable structure and its contents are testament to the warmth, poetry, and passion of one of America's most influential and celebrated craftsmen.
Mansfield Bascom, a retired architect and structural engineer, has been married to Wharton Esherick’s daughter Ruth for more than 50 years. Bascom served as the Wharton Esherick Museum’s director until 1990, when he became its curator. He and Ruth live in Esherick’s former workshop in Paoli, Pennsylvania.