Garrett Hack: 21 years at the CFC

Written by Heide Martin on .

Last week Garrett Hack was teaching here at the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship for the twenty-first consecutive year. Garrett is an engaging and deeply knowledgeable instructor, and his week-long workshops here in Maine are waitlisted year after year. We are truly lucky to have him. Thank you, Garrett, for all your years here at the CFC!

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In addition to teaching workshops at the CFC, Garrett teaches classes out of his Vermont workshop and at numerous schools across the country and the globe. Garrett is also an accomplished author of two books – The Hand Plane Book and Classic Hand Tools – and countless articles. Many of his students are repeat “customers,” and they value Garrett’s skill with and deep knowledge of hand tools and techniques.

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Hand tool focused classes lead to an intimate teaching style that relies on detailed demos and extensive one-on-one consultation in the classroom.

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One of Garrett’s teaching tools is a small, splay-leg table that features a single drawer and solid wood construction. Left, a 2017 student piece in cherry; right, a group of 2015 students gather their tables together on the final day of class.

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A 2017 student works on perfecting a walnut version of the table.

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Our 2017 Precision with Hand Tools class poses with the results of their efforts over a one-week workshop. Impressive!

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Despite a rigorous teaching calendar, Garrett somehow finds the time to continue to hone his craft through the development of complex, intricate pieces of furniture. We have been able to showcase a few of these pieces in the Messler Gallery over the years, and currently on display is Outside In, a truly original commission cabinet. Garrett’s wife Carolyn Enz Hack collaborated on the paintings that accent this piece, and it features over 20 native hardwoods and a dizzying assortment of drawers, doors, and compartments. If you have a chance to make a trip to the Mid Coast area before the show’s close on September 13th, be sure to stop in and request a demo of the several hidden features of this piece.

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During his week on campus, Garrett gave Center staff and students a tour of Outside In, telling us about details such as a door that is unlocked through a specific configuration of drawers (left) and his process for constructing a curving drawer (right).

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Gallery Manager Victoria Allport tries to find the combination for unlocking the door.

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Below, a few other pieces of Garrett’s that have been exhibited in the Messler Gallery over the years: Va Va Vienna (New Work by Faculty 2012), It’s a Beautiful Life (New Work by Faculty 2005), and Ripplicious (New Work by Faculty 2014).

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Thank you again Garrett, for bringing your enthusiasm, skill, and dedication to our campus. We look forward to many more years!

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 To learn more about Garrett, please visit his website.