Artistry in Wood and Word

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Texas Furniture Maker Show 2012


First Place (Best of Show)
Frank Strazza, Waco TX "Roses" Federal Style Hall Table

Second Place
Randolph Secrest, Spicewood TX Trunk

Third Place
Bert Ray, Wimberley TX "Blossom Table II"

Best Contemporary Style
James Breaux, San Antonio TX Haidinger's Brush" Table

Best Traditional Style
Caleb James, Katy TX Settee

Best Texas Style
Lou Quallenberg, Llano TX "Drift" Coffee Table

Best Art Style
Jeremy Grubb, Dickinson TX "Rising Sun" Console

Best Apprentice
John Burton, Arlington TX Blanket Chest

Woodcraft’s People’s Choice
Frank Strazza, Waco TX "Roses" Federal Style Hall Table

Judges’ Special Award / Fine Woodworking®
Lee Westphal, Burnet TX Display Cabinet

Judges’ Special Award / Alamo Hardwoods
Brooke Davis, Austin TX Intertwined Series: Bench

Judges’ Special Award / Alamo Hardwoods
Barry Bradley, Fredericksburg TX "Smoke Signals" Table

Judges’ Special Award / Allen & Allen
Danny Kamerath, Dallas TX "Kampa" Coffee Table

Judges’ Special Award / Dakota Premium Hardwood
Leo Litto, Austin TX Work Table

Furniture Committee Award /Artisans at Rocky Hill
Mark Seay, Plano TX Wind Rose Table

SAPFM Award / Society of American Period Furniture Makers
W. Malcolm Granberry, Houston TX Spine Chest

Woodturners’ Choice Award / Hill Country Turners
Caleb James, Katy TX Settee

Woodcraft® Sponsor’s Award
Lou Quallenberg, Llano TX "Drift" Coffee Table

Johnny Jones Sponsor's Award
Jon Percy, Austin TX "Fallen Leaves" Bench
Honorable Mentions:
Carl Powell, Bartlett TX KOA Top Table
Wayne Locke, Austin TX Chair
Wayne Delyea, Granbury TX Rocking Chair
Brad Dawson, Kemah TX Curio/Display Cabinet
Brandon Berdoll, Cedar Creek TX Spalted Pecan Coffee Table

Rex didn't win an award this year, but his piece was gorgeous.  His piece this year was in the Contemporary Category.  It has clean and simple lines, but was far from simple to make and the finish is awesome.  Sometimes the judges don't appreciate or overlook pieces for their seeming simplicity. We know he can't expect to win something every year, but it would sure be nice! 

Congratulations to all these great artists and their beautiful craftsmanship!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Merry Christmas 2012!

We wish you joy and peace this Christmas season as you take time to reflect upon and remember the most precious gift given to us.


“Like a message in a bottle, I was thrown out to sea. I didn’t ask to be the message, I didn’t want to be thrown out to sea. While it is a good message and I love the sea, I did not expect this to happen to me. Safe in my orderly tablet, I fit in nicely with all the rest. Now I was bouncing along, being tossed about by waves, nudged by sea creatures, pounded by rain showers, baked by sun’s rays. Sure, there were times of peacefulness – floating on calm waters, under a moonlit sky, a slight breeze cooling my container. But, the worst part was I had no control over where I went, what I was exposed to, or what my purpose was. This was my life and I decided I better get used to it, or just shrivel up into crumbles of paper. Then what would be the result of it all? No one would ever see my message. My life experiences would mean nothing to me or to anyone. And the one who placed me in the bottle would not have my purpose fulfilled. So I let go and decided to enjoy the journey. I smiled at the sun, waved back at the waves, rolled with the sea creatures and just generally bobbed along with a little more spring in my bottle. I was a lot more enjoyable to be around. And I felt my message was not fading, but rather was getting clearer and deeper. I was living into the message. It became me.

Then one day, I found I was no longer bobbing along on the sea. I had stopped. My bottle lay still. I was on dry land. And then, I was surrounded by people. I was raised up, my container broken open and my message unfurled. It pronounced to all:
This was my purpose – a holy purpose, a sacred message.”
By Mary Lou White
In this season of rebirth and love, celebrate life, purpose and meaning.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Friends in the Afternoon

It was a beautiful day, on May 26, 2012, when a gathering of friends came together at The Shadowbrook Restaurant in Capitola, CA to celebrate a very special person, my sister Kate Judson, for her 60th Birthday!  Friends and relatives shared delectable food, marvelous wines and meaningful fellowship together.  With gorgeous flowers provided by my other sister, Nyna Dolby, loving words shared by Katie's daughter, Carrie Urso, daughter Elise Judson (by letter), her husband Dave, and our Mom, we laughed, cried and celebrated the positive ways our lives have been impacted by this precious person.  The theme for the event was "Friends in the Afternoon."  This was descriptive of the gathering in more than one way!  To commemorate the gathering, I wrote a poem, which was also shared in written form on the tables.  Enjoy the poem, enjoy life!

Friends in the Afternoon

Friends in the Morning.
In the fresh scrubbed pink cheeks of dawn,
The lime green budding foliage shivers in delight, anticipating the unknown promises of day.
Neophyte and innocent, the na?ve flutter into the expanse.
Together we expect that life is thrilling.

Friends at Noonday.
Seemingly certain of strength and resolve through accomplishment and acclaim,
The brightness of the sun begins to send some to the retreat of shadows and forms of relief.
False protection blurs vision, insight, optimism – realism ruling the day.
Together we face that life is challenging.

Friends in the Afternoon.
Dwelling on glimpses of fleeting moments of years gone by,
In visceral nostalgia, the seasonal leaves fall and are stirred by the randomness of autumn breezes.
And the subtle reflective moments of afternoons, as the daylight wanes, bring the challenges of day into perspective.
Together we discover that life is good.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

2011 Texas Furniture Maker Show Awards 

The 2011 Texas Furniture Maker Show is now available for your viewing enjoyment at the Kerrville Arts and Cultural Center in Kerrville, TX.  The awards ceremony was on November 19.  Once again, there is a beautiful collection of artistically and technically pleasing furniture to view and purchase (if you should so choose!)  The winners this year include:  Caleb Nolen, Robert Galusha, Mark Seay, Chris Kemler, Randy Secrest, Rex White, Barry Bradley, Chris Shenkman, Jim Wallace, Jeremy Grubb, James Breaux, Dean Storey, Danny Kamerath, Lou Quallenberg, Kim Townsend, Alton Bowman, Paul Odem, John Sherman, Bert Ray and Gordon McDougal.  To see some of the highlights, view the photos below.

BEST of SHOW! By Caleb Nolen

2nd Place Overall - By Robert Galusha

3rd Place Overall - By Mark Seay

Best Contemporary Style - By Chris Kemler

Best Texas Style - By Rex White

Best Art Style - "Melting" - By Barry Bradley

Best Apprentice - By Chris Shenkman

People's Choice Award and Judges' Special Award - "Pie Safe" By Jim Wallace

Judges' Special Award - By James Breaux

Judges' Special Award - By Dean Storey

Tall Jewelry Case - By Danny Kamerath

Furniture Commmittee Award - By Lou Quallenberg

Society of American Period Furniture Makers Award - By Rex White

Sunday, September 25, 2011

New Gallery!


We are excited to announce that Rex is now showing his work in the RS Hanna Gallery (http://www.rshannagallery.com/) in Fredericksburg, TX.  It is a beautiful space filled with a variety of artistic styles - water color, oils, pastels, bronzes and Rex's furniture!  Shannon and Thad Hanna have attracted an impressive group of artists whose work will satisfy many different tastes.  We invite you to come visit!  The Grand Opening will be Saturday, October 22, 2011, 6:00-9:00 p.m.!  Here are a few photos to peak your interest...but they don't - at all - do the gallery justice!  So come see for yourself!  208 South Llano Street, Fredericksburg, TX 78624.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

To Life

Our niece Carrie Judson was married on the 4th of July to Justin Urso. They danced together with the Texas Ballet Theater (TBT) Company in Fort Worth, TX for a few years and now, as Carrie continues to dance with the ballet, Justin is pursuing his artistic expression in musical theater. They are both extremely talented and their wedding and reception was a wonderful expression of their talent and the talents of their friends. We were blessed to enjoy a wonderful weekend of festivities in their honor in the Santa Cruz, CA area with them, their friends and families. At their rehearsal dinner, I shared the following poem, which I wrote for them and in honor of their very special gifts, which they have shared with all who are around them. Thanks Carrie and Justin! We love you!

To Life!

We listen, we hear, we answer the call
To Dance!
We listen with discipline
We hear with passion
We answer with beauty
And we share a little bit of heaven with the earth.

We listen, we hear, we answer the call
To Sing!
We listen with resonance
We hear in harmony
We answer with joy
And we share a little bit of heaven with the earth.

We listen, we hear, we answer the call
To Love!
We listen with our souls
We hear with our devotion
We answer with our union
And we share a little bit of heaven with the earth.

We listen, we hear, we answer the call
To Live!
We listen with our talents
We hear with our love
We answer with our lives
And we share a little bit of heaven with the earth.

To Dance, To Sing, To Love
To Life!
To Carrie and Justin!

A poem written for and about Carrie and Justin for their wedding
By Mary Lou Cunningham White

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Louise and Brian's Wedding

Our niece, Louise Dolby and Brian Schultze got married in Stanford Memorial Church on March 19, 2011. What a beautiful wedding and festive celebration it was! Despite torrential downpours throughout their wedding day, the bride and groom stayed poised and jubilant through all of the activities of the day. I wrote a poem as part of our wedding gift to them and was honored that they chose to have it read as part of their ceremony! As our first blog post of 2011 (finally!), I share it with you. Enjoy!


A seed of love was planted in our hearts long ago

Tiny, Fragile, Buried

The elements of life seemed to threaten, not encourage, the seed to grow

Pain, Hurt, Loss

Deep within the darkness, something stirred within

Longing, Knowing, Hoping

The tears of life had moistened the soil against the skin

Softening, Breaking, Opening

And love sprouted with new growth, in new green

Joy, Life, Laughter

Transcending all that it had known, the light was seen

Vision, Adventure, Possibilities

Reaching skyward toward the light, a fresh breeze blows

Awakening, Igniting, Uplifting

And the flower slowly, elegantly unfolds. The heart knows.

Life has called forth life

Love has called forth love.

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