Our 2014 Demonstrators are:
Rex Burningham, Utah
Rex Burningham, Utah: Rex was introduced to woodturning by Dale Nish and worked as an assistant in woodturning courses while in college. Working alongside some of the world's best-known woodturners, including Dale Nish, Rude Osolnik, Richard Raffan and Ray Key, gave Rex the chance to learn from the best.
Rex has co-produced 8 instructional woodturning DVDs and is co-author of "Turning Pen and Pencils". He is a nationally recognized woodturner, teaching and demonstrating throughout the United States. He has given many national and several international presentations at workshops, conferences, and symposia.
Nelson Cassinger, Nevada
Nelson began his life as an artist when he created custom designs painting cars and motorcycles. After attending a woodworking show in Southern California where he watched Stuart Mortimer demonstrate, Nelson became intrigued with the idea of creating his own segmented pieces. Soon thereafter he was attending classes from Rex Burningham, Mike Mahoney, Stuart Mortimer and Dale Nish.
When Nelson met Ray Allen he saw the unlimited possibilities that can be created with the blend of exotic woods, vivid grains, vibrant colors and form. Soon after, Nelson was creating intricate vessels with as many as several thousand different pieces perfectly glued, turned and finished.
Nelson has invented multiple templates and jigs to assist him with the intricate process of making his segmented pieces. Few in the world have the patience for such dynamic pieces, making Nelson a rare artist.
At the Symposium Nelson will be demonstrating his new creation of “bangles” or bracelets made from wood pieces. Nelson will show that even the part time woodturner can have a lot of fun making a bracelet of his own creation.
Kip Christensen, Utah
Kip Christensen, PhD, is a Professor in the School of Technology at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. His primary teaching areas include furniture design, wood prototyping, manufacturing, and supervising student teachers in Technology and Engineering Education. Dozens of his students have received national recognition for having furniture they designed and built accepted into juried exhibitions and published in books featuring exceptional furniture designs. Kip is also a well-known woodturner. He has co-authored three books and co-produced eight instructional dvds about woodturning. His work has been published in over two dozen books. He has also authored several articles regarding woodworking and technology education. His turnings have been pictured in a variety of magazines and displayed in many galleries and international juried exhibitions. His work is also housed in numerous collections, both public and private. Kip has been invited to give over 250 national and international presentations at workshops and symposia. His work is characterized by clean lines and fine detail. Kip has a particular interest in woodturning education and is often involved in teaching turners about techniques and projects used in teaching others how to turn.
Kirk DeHeer, Utah
Kirk DeHeer is a well-known local woodturner known for his craftsmanship and understanding of sharpening techniques. Kirk enjoys teaching others solid foundational techniques and skills that aid them in expanding their creativity and artistic abilities in the future. Kirk has assisted and taught at many local classes and club demonstrations, and has recently produced his first educational DVD, Sharpening Demystified.
David Ellsworth, Pennsylvania
Over the past forty years, David Ellsworth has become known as one of the premier designers of turned wooden vessel forms. His work is included in the permanent collections of thirty-seven museums and numerous private collections. He is a Fellow and former Trustee of the American Craft Council and has received fellowship awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Pennsylvania Council for the Arts, and the PEW Fellowship for the Arts. In 2009 he was elected by the James A. Renwick Alliance of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. to receive the prestigious “Master of the Medium” award in wood. He is the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Collectors of Wood Art and the Lifetime Membership Award from the American Association of Woodturners. He runs his own private school of woodturning at his home and studio in Buck’s County, Pennsylvania.
Mark Gisi, Colorado
Mark began woodworking in high school and spent a year in the Industrial Arts Program at Colorado State University, before transferring to Engineering. He has been involved with construction and woodworking to some extend for his whole life. After retiring from his engineering career, he has spent a lot of time in woodworking, primarily with lathe applications featuring segmenting. He is a member of the Penmakers Guild, the International Association of Penturners, and the AAW. Mark has done demonstrations on making pens, wine stoppers, pepper mills and many other forms of segmentation using wood, plastics, acrylics, and metals at Woodcraft, Craft Supplies, local schools, Woodworkers Symposium in Provo Utah, Penturners Rendezvous, and will be part of the 2014 AAW program in Phoenix AZ. He has been featured on several occasions in Pen World Magazine and collaborated with his son to create the Tribute to Mickey Mantle Pen that won the Sports Theme pen of the Year given by Pen World Magazine.
Steven Gray, Arizona
Steve Gray’s love of wood began when he would make trips to his grandfather’s wood shop. There he has fond memories of smelling the Black Walnut lumber, poking around in all the small parts drawers and handling the tools that his grandfather used on the lathe. Steve bought his first lathe in 1976 and started making spinning wheels, furniture and cabinets. In 1982 he rediscovered kaleidoscopes and sold his scope creations at craft fairs where they were enthusiastically received.
Over the years Steve has contributed to woodworking magazines, demonstrated and taught wood turning and kaleidoscope making and his work has been featured in national and international exhibits. Steve’s kaleidoscopes are now represented in galleries in both the United States and Japan.
“I see kaleidoscopes as a symbol for my life in many ways. Scopes are a very special blending of optics, gadgets and woodworking and they draw together my interests and my passions. I am forever fascinated by the patterns created by the arrangement of the mirrors. The mystique that lies on the other side of the mirrors’ reflection is distilled and intensified in a kaleidoscope. The reflections in my kaleidoscopes are reflections of my life and I continue to be intrigued with the practice of creating these images.”
At the symposium Steve will share his considerable skills as they relate to kaleidoscopes, both the unique limited edition and production pieces
Kurt Hertzog, New York
Kurt is a professional woodturner who enjoys everything from making his own turning tools to photographing his finished turnings. A frequent demonstrator and instructor on many facets of woodturning, he particularly enjoys teaching tool sharpening, workholding, turned ornaments, and advanced penmaking. Kurt is a regular feature columnist for Woodturning Design and Woodturning Magazine, a Council Member of the Pen Makers Guild, and a member of the Board of Directors and currently Vice President of the AAW.
Jerry Kermode, California
Jerry is known as much for his sense of humor and friendly manner as he is for his ability with the chisel. He teaches and practices “the art of non-violent woodturning,” helping people to understand the subtler nuances of cutting wood without fear or trepidation.
He is an invited guest instructor and demonstrator at the AAW National Symposiums, Arrowmont School in Tennessee, at the Woodworking West national symposium in Utah, and more. His current woodturnings are available at galleries throughout the country as well as American Craft Council and other fine craft shows.
Ray Key, UK
Ray Key was drawn to wood as a small boy; there was something about it that seemed to speak to him. His first experience of woodturning was at age 14. Woodturning became part of his working life when he became an apprentice patternmaker in 1958. Job changes saw him work with fibre glass and clay, but neither offered the satisfaction of wood. In 1965 Ray bought his first lathe and this started his real passion (obsession) with woodturning.
During the eight years Ray worked clay in the motor industry, woodturning kept him sane. By making a wide range of domestic tableware he built up a small business on the side. Eventually a decision had to be made; either the day job or the hobby had to go, there was no contest once his wife Liz backed him.
In 1973 woodturning became his full time living. Since 1980 he has travelled widely, being invited to demonstrate at International Seminars in USA, Canada, Ireland, Norway, New Zealand, Finland, Israel, France and Germany. He has also run teaching workshops in most of these countries. His work is in major private collections worldwide and in the permanent collections of a number of museums.
His work is about purity of form. He applies the minimalist approach in an ongoing quest to produce objects of beauty and elegant simplicity. Ray has always had empathy with the late Professor David Pye’s statement that “The difference between the thing that sings and the thing which is for ever silent is very slight indeed”.
Bonnie Klein, Oregon
Bonnie has been involved with woodturning since the early 1980’s. In 1986 she designed the small Klein Lathe which was in production for over 25 years. In 1992 she introduced the Klein Threading Jig as an accessory to the lathe for cutting threads in wood. Bonnie produced 5 turning DVD’s and in 2005 wrote a woodturning project book. Her popularity as a demonstrator and educator has resulted in invitations to countries around the world such as South Africa, Ireland, Norway, New Zealand, the UK, and Australia, as well as all across the USA. For over 8 years, she has been heavily involved with the Youth Turning Program at the American Association of Woodturners' annual symposiums. In 2003 the American Association of Woodturners awarded Bonnie with an AAW Honorary Lifetime Member in recognition of her contributions to woodturning. Dale Nish was sitting next to me in the audience during that presentation. Bonnie specializes in boxes with threaded lids and has been the pioneer in this field for many years. She designed a threading jig that can be used as an accessory on most of the mini lathes.
Glen Lucas, Ireland
Sharp tools…big shavings…super-fine cuts…this is just part of what makes a demonstration by Glenn special. He will share his knowledge gained through many years immersed in production bowl turning.
Glenn Lucas has an international reputation for his proficiency at the lathe and his ability to pass on to students, the skills and knowledge he has gained. He balances his production of classic bowls turned from native Irish wood, with an extensive teaching programme run from his Co Carlow ‘Woodturning Study Centre’. A frequent guest Demonstrator at overseas conferences, he also gives Turning Masterclasses at international arts and crafts schools.
In October 2010 he produced the first Irish woodturning DVD ‘Mastering Woodturning – Tools and Techniques’ and in June 2011 launched ‘Mastering Woodturning – Bowl Turning Techniques’. Both DVDs have been favourably reviewed and are stocked by outlets worldwide.
Mike Mahoney, Utah
Mike has been a professional woodturner since 1992. He specializes in utilitarian items that he wholesales to American Crafts galleries across the U.S. Mike acquires all his material from local urban sources (tree trimmers and city landfills). Mike has also taught his craft at woodturning symposiums in seven countries. Mike has diversified by creating instructional DVDs and a line of woodworking finishes with a walnut oil base.
Art Majerus, California
Art is a fulltime turner making everything from small toothpick holders to large hollow forms. Since 1994, he has been making a living at his turning doing 20-22 Art & Craft shows a year. His will demonstrate using the spindle roughing gouge as a primary tools, unlocking the many things this versatile tool can do. Art will also demonstrate and lead a discussion session on doing Art & Craft shows. That will include types of shows, materials needed, and how to determine pricing in order to actually make a profit along with other topics.
Stuart Mortimer, United Kingdom
Stuart Mortimer lives in Hampshire, England with his wife Linda who gives inspiration and is his strongest critic. Stuart is a self taught turner from 1968. He has built up an International reputation throughout the wood turning world and is highly regarded by his peers and collectors alike. His work is hand crafted on and off a lathe using hand held electrical powered tools as well as traditional carving tools. He started spiral work in the early 1980’s to decorate a wide range of work from twisted miniature goblets, candle sticks, bowls, boxes, hollow forms, and other decorative works.
Stuart retired from the London Police Force in 1989. He is the holder of the World Record for the largest bowl turned in 1997 in the USA authenticated and certified by the Guinness book of records.
He uses other decorating techniques including burning, carving, ebonizing, and piercing. Stuart is now adding silver and gold to his work with considerable success. The twisted finials, beads and other forms of decoration is being hand cut from solid silver.
Bill Ooms, Arizona
Bill learned basic woodworking techniques from his father. As a young man, his desire was to envision and create new things. This led him to his first career in engineering and now he has returned to his roots as a full time woodworker to create unique and delicate artwork.
Bill has been a past demonstrator at the Utah Symposium and AAW Symposiums. His work has been featured in Fine Woodworking, American Woodturner, Woodturning, Woodturning Design, and Crafts Report magazines. His work has been shown in juried and invited exhibitions including the recent “Walk in the Woods”, “Harmony”, and “Ceremony” exhibits at the Gallery of Wood Art and the “Small Treasures” shows.
Demos at the 2014 Utah Symposium will show how he uses a mini metal lathe in his work to make very thin concentric layers of wood on his boxes. He’ll also show how he uses a mini metal lathe to make custom metal parts for his pens.
web site: www.billooms.com.
Richard Raffan, Australia
Richard Raffan has turned wood for a living since 1970. Well known internationally for his bowls, boxes, teaching, and classic woodturning books and videos (Turning Wood, Turning Bowls, Turning Boxes, Turning Projects, The Art of Turned Bowls, and Complete Illustrated Guide to Turning).
Don Russell, Georgia
From childhood until now, Don has always had a deep desire to create objects from wood. His first opportunity came in high school shop, when after the first six weeks of the woodworking course, the shop teacher made him his assistant.
Don has owned his own workshop for fifty years, and during this time has built furniture, museum exhibits, repaired antiques and taught turning classes. Don's interest in geometric shapes has led him to develop a system for constructing polychromatic-style staved turnings that are different and unique.
For eight years, Don taught woodworking classes through the Community School Program in Cobb County, Georgia. The focus for these classes was construction of small furniture pieces and toys. Men, women, and even some children attended these classes. Currently, Don instructs woodworking and woodturning classes at the John C. Campbell Folk School.
Don was president of the Woodworkers Guild of Georgia for two years, and is presently affiliated with several woodworking and woodturning groups. The Peach State Woodturners that he helped organize and served as president of for two years meets monthly at his studio.
Woodworking has been Don's hobby for many years, and he enjoys the challenges and opportunities it presents. Don's hope for the future is to share his knowledge with others who have a desire to create from wood. Don was honored to have a chapter of his methods of cutting and creating polychromic Christmas Ornaments included in Dale Nish's latest book Woodturning Christmas Ornaments with Dale L. Nish.
Tom Sorensen, Utah
Tom Sorensen has been a professional wood turner for 54 years. He specializes in custom stair bannisters and newels, table legs, and commercial building spires. Tom has previously demonstrated at the BYU Woodturning Symposium and the National Woodturning Symposium. For the 2014 Utah Woodturning Symposium, Tom will be demonstrating how to make a three-legged milk stool with spoon-foot legs. .
Al Stirt, Vermont
Al Stirt has been a professional woodturner for more than 40 years. His work is included in numerous public and private collections, including the Smithsonian, the White House, the Museum of Art and Design, and the Victoria and Albert Museum. He has demonstrated and taught about woodturning & design in Australia, England, Ireland, New Zealand and Canada as well as throughout the U.S. In 1997 the American Association of Woodturners awarded him an Honorary Lifetime Membership for his commitment and contributions to the field of woodturning. In additional to his functional bowls and platters, for the last 20 years he has been making ceremonial objects to try to address emotional & spiritual needs.
Keith Tompkins, New York
Keith has become known as one of the most innovative and creative contemporary American woodturners. A trained furniture maker, Keith’s interests have steadily evolved from making functional furniture pieces to creating unique “signature” works of art.
“As a cabinetmaker, I usually worked from a set of blueprints, building what was essentially someone else’s work. Now, when I stand in front of my lathe, I feel a sense of complete freedom to create anything I wish.”
Keith’s work has appeared in numerous publications including “The Best of Fine Woodworking”, “Wood Art Today 2”, and “500 Wood Bowls”, and has been featured in several magazines such as “Woodturning” (UK),” American Woodturner”, “Woodturning Design”, and “American Style”. His work has been displayed in several important exhibits, and is included in many major collections. His work has garnered several awards, including five “Niche Award” finalist awards, presented at the Buyer’s Market for American Craft in Philadelphia, and the “Richard Pagano Award” for best of show at the Northeastern Woodworkers Showcase in Saratoga, New York.
Keith has shared his enthusiasm for woodturning, demonstrating across the United States and into Canada, and at several AAW National Symposiums.
Joe Wagner, Utah
Joe is an accomplished woodturner with over forty years of experience. Inventor of the Wagner Texturing Tools, Joe has a gift for creating jigs and tools to suit his woodturning needs. One of the finest turners of projects and ornaments, Joe is an exceptional teacher and woodturner who is glad to share his experience and expertise to help others.
Hans Weissflog, Germany
Hans Weissflog is a full time woodturner and designer. He works in his workshop in Hil-desheim/ Germany together with his son Jakob, also a full time woodturner. He turns bowls and boxes. Hans travels a lot , does demos in Australia, Europe, USA and teaches classes.
In his demos he will show how to turn a box with a pierced lid. Also a „Drunken box“, this is a sphericon. The third demo will be a „Saturn box“, this is a box with a loose ring, made from one piece of wood. He explains also how to make chucks for all these boxes and more secrets.
Jakob Weissflog, Germany
Jakob did an apprenticeship in Hans Weissflogs workshop. He is a full time woodturner and works together with Hans in his studio. He does boxes and bowls and all kinds of small turnings.
He did demos in Australia , USA and Germany and taught some classes.
His demos will be: How to turn a sphere exact round without measuring, how you learn it in an apprenticeship in Germany. In the second demo he shows how to make one of his tape measures, including the chucks to hold the piece of wood on a very small rim. The third demo will be one of his boxes. It shows how to turn different pieces and put them together to have one box.