Regional furniture maker exhibit begins June 3

The Fine Art Museum on the campus of Western Carolina University will begin its summer series with an exhibit featuring the fine furniture of three regional artists.

David Scott rocking chair

David Scott rocking chair

“Contemporary Furniture: Innovation in Wood from Appalachian Traditions” will run from Tuesday, June 3, to Saturday, June 28, at the museum, in WCU’s Fine and Performing Arts Center. The exhibit is free and open to the public. An opening reception for the furniture exhibit (and for an exhibit of photographs of Fairview’s Hickory Nut Gap Farm) will be held from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, June 5.

The exhibit features a selection of furniture in a variety of styles by Jerome Clark of Sylva, John Gernandt of Waynesville and David Scott of Clyde, whose rocker is above right. “We are excited to feature three of Western North Carolina’s finest contemporary designers and craftsmen,” said Martin DeWitt, museum director. “This region is blessed with fine furniture craftsmanship rooted in tradition.”

The exhibit is in conjunction with a plain-style furniture symposium Friday, May 30, and Saturday, May 31, that the museum is sponsoring in collaboration with the Mountain Heritage Center, the Zachary-Tolbert House in Cashiers and the Bascom, a visual arts center in Highlands.

Gernandt’s grandfather and great-grandfather also built furniture. While his imagination is his inspiration, Gernandt is conscious of tradition. “I ask myself throughout the process if there is anything from the past I can bring forward into a piece of furniture I am making in the 21st century,” he said. Gernandt and his wife own and operate Textures Gallery in Waynesville.

Scott builds standard and custom contemporary furniture with hardwoods from the region and around the world. He is one of 20 owner-operators of Ariel Gallery in downtown Asheville. Clark turned to furniture-making after 20 years as a design engineer in the aerospace industry. His furniture reinterprets traditional Shaker and arts and crafts styles from a contemporary perspective.

The museum’s summer hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, excluding school holidays. For more information about exhibits, contact DeWitt at (828) 227-2553 or; or Hillary Brett, assistant curator, at (828) 227-3591 or Visit the Fine Art Museum online at