Ellsworth, David

Ellsworth, David

(1944–  ) wood craftsman/artist; born in Iowa City, Iowa. After starting as a folksinger/guitarist, he attended architecture school but took his degrees in fine arts at the University of Colorado. Opening a woodturning studio in Boulder, Colo., in 1975, he soon became bored with making production pieces and began to experiment with making thin-walled wooden vessels, more like those made by potters, basketmakers, or glassblowers than traditional woodturners. These distinctive pieces—made with tools of his own devising and designed to exploit the natural features of wood—gained him a wide public, many exhibits, and numerous awards and honors. In 1991 he moved on to a new phase with his "Solstice Series," in which he applied both fire and paints to the natural surface of wood, further extending his craft into the more creative area of art.