Headed by Wendy Maruyama,  this year marks the second time that this group has presented on World Wood Day.   Nicknamed “The Elephant in the Room”, inspired by their debut in Nepal last year,  the Wood Design group comprises of practitioners in furniture design, industrial design and installation/interior design.   This year we are including special guest artist Eric Adjetey Anang, a traditional coffin maker from Ghana.  True to the theme of the 'elephant in the room’, the group strives to present a different aspect of design and its cultural roots.   We are also proud to host Brian Reid, who will be giving a talk about the value of teaching woodworking to prisoners, through the Maine Prison Outreach.  And last, but not least, David Trubridge, a designer from New Zealand will present a talk, “Beauty Matters”, and true to this year’s theme of ROOTS, he will be building a canoe inspired by traditional New Zealand canoes from the Aua and Wuvulu islands.

WWDF is proud to partner with the Wood program at California State University at Long Beach (CSULB).

This program is also genenously co- sponsored by Maloof Foundation, Old Fashioned Milk PaintPowermatic, Surface Architectural SupplyThe Collectors of Wood Art and The Furniture Society.

Open Session:
Time: 10am-12pm,March 25th
Venue: Seaside Ballroom, LBCC


Project Lead (In the alphabetical order of the country and region represented)


Wendy Maruyama has been a professor of woodworking and furniture design for over 30 years. She is one of the first two women to graduate with a Masters in furniture making from Rochester Institute of Technology. Maruyama has exhibited her work nationally for over four decades. Maruyama’s work can also be found in both national and international permanent museum collections, including the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas; Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston, Australia, etc.

Participants (In the alphabetical order of the country and region represented)

Eric Adjetey ANANG

Eric Adjetey Anang is a Ghanaian artist, sculptor and a fantasy coffin carpenter. He was born in Teshie, Ghana. He's currently living between Madison, Wisconsin with his family and Accra, Ghana where he runs the Kane kwei carpentry workshop.

Francis Annan AFFOTEY

Francis Affotey Annan is a Ghanaian fine artist who's now base in Milwaukee, Wisconsin since 2014. He's specialized in semi abstract painting, he has three techniques that he uses semi- abstract, semi- pointillism and craftism. He has also been working (painting, decorating) the design coffins since 2013.


David Trubridge is an internationally recognised designer. David’s work came to international prominence in 2001 when his Body Raft was purchased by Cappellini for manufacture. His work has been purchased by many of the leading galleries and museums around the world. He is regularly invited to speak at conferences, often as a keynote speaker, and events all around the world in countries such as the USA, UK, France, Dubai, Malaysia, Australia, Iceland, Mexico, Japan and China.


Adam Manley is a studio artist and his work has been in solo/group exhibitions and at the International Symposium on Electronic Arts in Alburquerque, New Mexico. He has taught at San Diego State University, University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, and Maine College of Art. He was Windgate Fellow Artist in Residence at the University of Wisconsin at Madison during Fall 2014. He is currently Assistant Professor of Furniture Design and Woodworking at San Diego State University.


Brian Newell began wood carving at 8. Since that time, his arsenal of tools has expanded along with his range of fantastic wood, and his love of the work has remained constant. He still explores the entire universe of woodworking, sometimes camping out on its outer borders and other times remaining close to the center, making simple, beautiful and functional furniture from local woods.

Brian REID

Brian Reid first studied Engineering and Anthropology and returned to school to study furniture design in 1993. He has been working as a furniture designer/maker and educator ever since. In 2007 Brian was designated a “Searchlight Artist” by the American Craft Council. He is the recipient of the 2012 Artist Award from the Society of Arts and Crafts in Boston, and member of the New Hampshire Furniture Masters.


Chance Coalter is a furniture designer, craftsman and educator from San Diego, CA. He is most interested lately in the personality of furniture, and his work is focused on the entire form of a piece of furniture, creating a gesture or expression with each piece that gives the work its own identity. Lately he has been doing a lot of stack-lamination and carving of large, sculptural furniture forms.


Jennifer Anderson investigates the history and meaning of functional objects by working with a variety of processes and media. Her art is rooted by tradition, yet fueled by experimentation. Always pushing the idea of furniture beyond its most common perception as something purely functional, she creates objects that people live and interact with on a daily basis so as to encourage them to reconsider their relationship with objects they use everyday.

Kimberly WINKLE

Kimberly Winkle's work displays a balance of form, color and surface pattern. She has exhibited nationally and internationally. Her work has been included in a number of publications and awarded several artist residencies. She was awarded a State of Tennessee Individual Artist Award in 2011 and the Society of Arts and Crafts (Boston) John D. Mineck furniture fellowship in 2014. She is an Associate Professor and Director of the School of Art, Craft & Design at Tennessee Technological University.

Mark Stephen SFIRRI

Mark Sfirri is a furniture maker and sculptor who incorporates lathe-turned forms, often turned on multiple axes, in his work. He has demonstrated his techniques worldwide and his work is included in 27 public collections. He is a professor at Bucks County Community College. He has received two national awards: the “Distinguished Educator Award” in 2010 from the Renwick Alliance of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institutions and, in 2012, a “Lifetime Achievement Award” by the Collectors of Wood Art.

Mary Elizabeth KOERNER

Liz Koerner is a sculptor and furniture maker who recently graduated from the California College of the Arts in Wood/Furniture. Her work is at the same time personal and universal, smart, fun, and technically acute. During her time at HEREKEKE, Liz worked with hand-dyed paper and weathered wood, finding freedom from the perfectly polished surface.


Matt Hutton is an artist and educator living in Portland, Maine where he creates custom woodworking, art and furniture. His work explores process, utility and form and often draws from the transformation of the Midwest landscape, particularly that of farmlands that have deteriorated due to inactivity and redevelopment.

Miki Iwasaki

Miki Iwasaki ‘s curiosity in making and building things eventually led him to pursue a career in architecture. Throughout his academic and early professional years, Miki remained dedicated to his own art projects and furniture designs. his interests and skills constantly expand in the field of architecture, art and design as he pushes himself to explore new materials, methods and projects. Miki is currently adjunct faculty at Woodbury University San Diego, School of Architecture.


From an early age, Peter Scheidt has been obsessed with making. He received a bachelor’s degree in media theory from Brown University in Providence, RI. Theoretical reflection is important to his studio work and he strives to create innovative work which integrates theory and practice. He has worked designing and building custom furniture independently and collaboratively since 2005. Currently, he is pursuing an MFA in Woodworking and Furniture Design on the West Coast at San Diego State University.


Ryan Taber is an artist and maker based in Los Angeles. Since 2013 he has been an Assistant Professor of Art and the head of the Wood Program at California State University Long Beach. Through his research-intensive practice, he investigates a broad range of histories, artists, designers, artisans, architects, and filmmakers – amongst others – who have contributed to the visual canon that shapes our perception of social and cultural landscapes. His discursive body of work includes sculpture, furniture, drawings and paintings.