Emil Milan: Midcentury Master – Book Launch with Barry Gordon

May 10, 2018 - 7:00 PM

Join Syracuse artist and woodworker, Barry Gordon as he discusses more than a decade of research, writing, and design, to create the first publication documenting the life and work of Emil Milan.

Joining Barry will be artist Rebecca Dunn from Binghamton, New York. She works primarily in metal, stone and wood. Rebecca received woodcarving instruction from Emil Milan and visited him multiple times. She will be joining Barry to talk about her visits with Emil including some delightful anecdotes regarding Emil’s approach to art and his unorthodox lifestyle.

The book chronicles the life and work of Emil Milan (American, 1922–85), an important American artist, designer, and woodworker who was a major contributor of the studio craft movement in the United States after WWII. Milan’s work, known as “functional sculpture,” captures and exemplifies midcentury modern design aesthetic—exploring balance of form and function. Milan’s career was impressive, influencing many students and artists during his lifetime. He also played a part in the emergence and growth of craft organizations including the American Craft Council and Peters Valley School of Craft.

The Emil Milan Research Team has been working for nearly a decade to create the first biography and archive of the American artist. Since 2008 they have amassed hundreds of artifacts, photos, and documents, and conducted hundreds of interviews of Milan’s friends, neighbors, relatives, students, colleagues, curators, and collectors.

More information and info on book orders at www.emilmilan.org

Barry Gordon

“Thirty-three years after my single brief visit with Emil, I realize that I was, for a few hours, in the presence of greatness. Observing his woodworking path has strengthened my belief in the importance of well-executed small functional objects and in the value of sharing methods for their creation. I’ve also been reassured that it is OK to have equal affection for both my powerful shaping sander and my favorite carving knife.” – Syracuse artist, Barry Gordon