Many Things Considered: Works on Paper & Works in Wood

Exhibit Opening and Artist Talk by Mark Sfirri

Thursday, March 27
6:00-7:00 p.m.: Exhibit Opening/Meet the Artist, Henry Gallery
7:00-8:00 p.m.: Mark Sfirri: Artist Talk, Musser Auditorium
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Sfirri ExhibitTeacher and woodworker, Mark Sfirri, has been creating wood objects, often lathe-generated, since childhood. His work moves on a continuum from sculpture to functional furniture, with maybe-not-so-functional furniture in the middle and humor sometimes thrown in for good measure.

"Many Things Considered: Works on Paper & Works in Wood" comes to The Henry Gallery at Penn State Great Valley, March 27 through May 22. In conjunction with the exhibit, Sfirri will give a talk on his work and creative process on Thursday, March 27 at 7 p.m. in the Musser auditorium. The exhibit consists of about 90 pieces nearly half of which are rarely exhibited prints and watercolors, including new pieces as well examples of work throughout his diverse career.

"In black and white terms, there are two approaches to a career in art. One is linear where a thread weaves through each work. The other is what I call a 'big bang approach,' more explosive with things going off in lots of directions. I'm most definitely in this second group," says Sfirri. "I wake up in the morning and find out which way the wind is blowing and could be doing something completely different than the day before. This is perhaps not the best marketing approach, but it most definitely appeals to my many creative urges. The diversity of the work is what is most stimulating to me."

Sfirri grew up in Delaware County near Media, Pa., and attended Penncrest High School. He credits his art teacher, Claude Falcone, as a major influence on his career. Since 1981 Sfirri has lived in Bucks County near New Hope. He's a professor and coordinator of the Fine Woodworking program at Bucks County Community College. He lectures and demonstrates his signature multi-axis turning throughout the United States, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. His work is included in 27 public collections mostly in the United States, including the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institutions in Washington, D.C., Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Yale Art Gallery, Museum of Art and Design, and the Mint Museum of Craft + Design. He was honored by the Renwick Alliance with a national Distinguished Educator Award in 2010, in which he was only the second recipient of this award in the medium of wood. In 2012, Sfirri was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Collectors of Wood Art.

This exhibit is free and open to the public. The Henry Gallery is located in the Conference Center at Penn State Great Valley, 30 E. Swedesford Road, Malvern. Hours are Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.