ABOUT THOMAS IRVEN
My wood turning started in the Woods and Metals class in high school. I returned to woodturning some years later while working on my master’s degree. I have been making furniture and turning wood as a part-time or full-time career since 1983. I have sold my work at many craft shows, both large and small, wholesale and retail in the past 25-odd years. I hope to continue doing a few craft/art shows like the Bayou City Memorial Park each year. A few galleries in the area (Asher Gallery, The Copper Shade Tree) carry some of my turned wood pieces. I am one of the 30 owners of the Archway Gallery – a co-op gallery in Houston that always has some of my turned pieces on display and for sale.
During 33 years of turning I have continued to attend many woodturning conferences and seminars. Each one has expanded my knowledge of the craft. I am incorporating more color, texture, and materials other than wood into some of my pieces. I have also developed and expanded innovative techniques for adding a sense of movement to my turned forms.
Teaching and demonstrations are areas of woodturning that I enjoy and seem to do well. I have previously taught woodworking and woodturning classes in high school, middle school, and for The Woodwright’s Shop, Woodcraft, and The Cutting Edge, all in the Houston area. I have been teaching at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston’s History Camp since 2007. In 2013 and 2016, I demonstrated woodturning for the Texas Children’s Art Festival, at the MFAH, Bayou Bend location. These connections to the broader community provide a fresh perspective on how exposure to art, and hand work in particular, can enrich others.