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b.1966

 Studio shot:  Image from Architectural Digest, December 2005

Studio shot:  Image from Architectural Digest, December 2005

Since 1996, Jim Rose has focused on creating of a comprehensive body of Shaker inspired furnishings interpreted in steel. This body of work was motivated by a trip made in 1994 to the Shaker Museum of Mount Lebanon and Old Chatham in New York and Hancock in Massachusetts. The artist’s handmade process is accompanied by an ongoing examination of Shaker history, lifestyle, and furniture making techniques. Each piece is handmade from steel with natural rust patinas found in local scrap yards. After brushing and waxing, the finish of each completed piece suggests the aged woods of Shaker originals. To date, Rose has completed one hundred and thirty pieces with many small limited editions. These include benches, chairs, clocks, counters and small to very large case pieces. Recently Jim Rose has begun exploring household objects, such as oval boxes cold formed out of found painted steel and fastened with handmade rivets. The manner of steel construction references wood building methods while addressing issues of traditional and modern craftsmanship. The issue of appropriation is raised with the development of some designs that are modern homages to the originals. Each piece speaks to its Shaker muse while existing in a contemporary context. The challenge of designing and fabricating new pieces presents a variety of problems that are resolved through trial and error. This process of problem solving enables Jim Rose to evolve as an artist. He strives to balance visual complexity with the simplicity of clean lines. All pieces are solidly constructed for daily use. With this body of work, he aspires to continue his investigations of a past American heritage that has had far reaching influences on modern design. In doing so Jim Rose will travel to various historic Shaker sites for research and inspiration.