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Someone asked where my work might be found in public collections:

In 2005 the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts put together an exhibition titled, Inspired by China. The Peabody Essex has an outstanding collection of Asian art, much of it having come to America at the height of the 18th century China trade that was centered in Salem. About twenty-five North American and Chinese furnituremakers were invited to hear seminars about the museum’s collection and then build something that would be related.

One motif that recurs in Chinese decorative work is “cracked ice”, where surfaces are broken up by randomly sized and shaped polygons. Another furniture form that attracted me was the “puzzle table”. Rectangles, triangles, and parallelograms could be put together in various configurations.

I combined these two concepts and added a trompe’loeil paper and brush with Chinese calligraphy. The characters read, “The artfulness of the cracked ice table, shatters to pieces the uncarved block.” The couplet makes reference to Lao-Tzu, who used the metaphor of the uncarved block to suggest a state of purity before man’s ego intrudes.

After the exhibition the museum acquired the piece.

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