ESCONDIDO — When Brian
Murphy went looking for fellow craftsmen to exhibit
in his fourth annual “Wood: A Furniture Show IV” —
which opens Friday at the Escondido Municipal
Gallery — he ran into an unexpected problem.
Many of the
furniture-makers who regularly exhibit in the hugely
popular show didn’t have anything available to show
this winter. Ever since the recession began, few
furniture artisans can afford the financial risk of
building an inventory. Instead, they build on
commissions and rarely have finished pieces
available in their studios to exhibit.
still managed to cobble together a show of 14
handmade pieces by six San Diego County artisans,
including himself. The show will feature chairs, a
rocker, tables, a jewelry cabinet and more.
show is one of the best-attended exhibits all year
at the gallery, which is managed by the Escondido
Arts Partnership. On opening night last year, more
than 600 people crammed the Grand Avenue gallery for
“Wood III,” and Murphy said that during the
one-month show, visitors came by the busload from
all over North County.
mouth is really great for the show each year,” he
said. “We get so many people in here who are art
collectors who really appreciate the work of fine
artisans. It’s exciting.”
co-founder of the San Diego Fine Woodworking
Association and proprietor of Murphy’s Fine
Woodworking in Escondido, will show two chairs he
created in the style of Gustav Stickley. He will
sell one and donate the other to the Escondido Arts
Partnership, which will auction the chair to raise
money for future exhibits.
exhibiting are brothers Amal and Shem McNew, whose
Escondido-based furniture business McFinn Designs
was recently featured in San Diego Home & Garden
magazine. The McNews specialize in
contemporary-style furniture and they are creating a
table for the exhibit, Murphy said.
Palomar College woodworking instructor Jerry Beaudry
of La Mesa will exhibit four pieces in the show,
including a rocking chair in the style of Sam Maloof
and a jewelry box.
resident Dick Ugoretz, who is vice president of the
woodworking association, will exhibit some
traditional-style wood furniture.
newcomer David Marr of San Diego will show some
tables and cabinets that highlight his expertise
with wood veneer, marquetry and inlay.
said the recession has been hard on fine
furniture-makers, but quality craftsmanship will
always have loyal customers. He said he has a
three-month backlog of orders right now, and the
McNew brothers have a six-month pipeline for
opens Friday and runs through Feb. 2 at 262 E. Grand
Ave. An opening reception from 5:30 to 8 p.m.
Saturday will be hosted by Stone Brewing Co. Gallery
hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays and 11 a.m. to
4 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays. For more, call
(760) 480-4101 or visit