Wood Workshops at Penland

Penland offers 1-, 2-, and 8-week classes taught by visiting instructors in our well-equipped studios. Classes in our woodshop include topics such as furniture design and construction, wood sculpture, joinery, boat building, wooden instruments, wood carving, and more. Workshops are open to serious students of all levels unless specified in course description; beginners welcome.

Enrollment for summer and fall 2017 and spring 2018 workshops is currently open.





SUMMER session 5

July 23 - August 8, 2017

Ted Lott, Habitation #10, found object, pine, electrical, twine,

34 x 24 x 24 inches


Ted Lott
The En-Lightened Object: Functional Sculpture from Found Materials

In this workshop we’ll find the creative and illuminative potential latent in ordinary objects. Beginning with the basics of wiring a single bulb, students will design and build their own lamps, lights, and lighted objects using items diverted from the waste stream. We’ll focus on quick, fun, and intuitive ways of building as we cover safe wiring, switches, carving and shaping, painting, finishing, and various means of gluing, screwing, and otherwise joining objects together. We’ll use basic woodshop tools such as the bandsaw, drill press, hand tools, etc. All levels. Code 05W


Studio artist; teaching: Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, Center for Turning and Furniture Design (PA); exhibitions: Alton Arts Center (AR), Swarthmore College (PA), Blue Spiral Gallery (NC), Form & Concept Gallery (NM); residencies: Kohler Arts/Industry (WI), Anderson Ranch (CO), Vermont Studio Center.












SUMMER session 6

August 13 - 25, 2017

Sabiha Mujtaba, Dan’s Chair, cherry, paint, gold leaf,

needlepoint by Nancy Keating, 39 x 25-1/2 x 23-1/2 inches


Sabiha Mujtaba
The Serendipity of Design

Scripts, alphabets, and languages that are not familiar can present shapes and forms that are a stimulating springboard for design. Looking at a single character or a phrase, students will discover the serendipitous nature of designing from this unusual resource. Students may make a container, a small furniture piece, or a nonfunctional piece that will receive/reflect/represent the elements inspired by this design challenge. Design development will be through drawings, scale models, paper, clay, or wood. We’ll cover simple joinery, freeform shaping, relief carving, appliqué, image transfer, and the safe and efficient use of hand and power tools. All levels. Code 06W

Studio artist; teaching: Highland Woodworking (Atlanta); exhibitions: Master Woodworkers Show (TN); Habatat Galleries (VA); work published in Fine Woodworking Design Book 7, 500 Tables (Lark), 500 Chairs (Lark).









SUMMER session 7

August 27 - September 2, 2017

Sarah Marriage, October Box (detail), madrone, silk, brass


Sarah Marriage
Plane & Shave

Our workshop will explore the science and art of planing wood by hand. We’ll use a variety of metal and wooden planes and spokeshaves, experimenting with their specialized strengths: from flat work to curved, shaving end grain to smoothing spindles. Students will also make their own wooden hand plane and learn how to tune and use it. We’ll discuss ways of designing custom tools to solve particular problems and ways of incorporating toolmaking into our practice. All levels. Code 07W

Studio artist, founder of A Workshop of Our Own (MD); teaching: College of the Redwoods (CA), Anderson Ranch (CO), Herron School of Art and Design (IN); John D. Mineck fellowship (Boston), Center for Furniture Craftsmanship fellowship (ME); exhibitions: XXChange (MD), Messler Gallery (ME).








Fall 8-Week Concentration

September 24 - November 17, 2017

Christina Boy, Chair 220, red elm, milk paint, Baltic birch,

31-1/4 x 17-3/4 x 16 inches

Christina Boy
Design. Build. Repeat.

While learning the fundamentals of woodworking technique, tools, and safety, we’ll dive into the process of making multiples. Each student will design a limited line of products from concept to completion: sketching, designing, drafting, making the necessary templates and jigs, and building prototypes for the purpose of understanding the steps of small batch production. Demonstrations will cover basic woodworking skills and will continue in depth based on the needs of each student’s designs and projects. All levels. Studio fee: $155. Code F00W

Studio artist; former Penland core fellow; teaching: Arrowmont (TN), Chestnut Creek School of the Arts (VA), Orange County Libraries (VA), representation: Troika Contemporary Craft Gallery (VA), Penland Gallery; exhibitions: La Difference (VA), Penland Gallery, Southern Highlands Craft Guild (NC), Crossroads Gallery (VA).







Spring 8-Week Concentration

March 11 - May 4, 2018

Tom Shields, Held Up, found furniture, ebonized oak,

43 x 72 x 22 inches


Tom Shields

This workshop will explore standard historic woodworking techniques and then push them into new territories. We’ll rethink structure and design through hybrid works that combine existing (found) furniture and newly fabricated parts. We’ll focus on building furniture and sculpture with minimal tooling. We’ll cover traditional joinery, milling, hand cutting, and the use of power tools. Students will learn the tricks needed to build not-so-traditional furniture without spending thousands of dollars on equipment. All levels. Studio fee: $155. Code S00W

Studio artist; teaching: University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, Penland; residencies: Kohler Arts/Industry (WI), Century Furniture (NC), San Diego State University, former Penland resident artist; collections: Gregg Museum of Art and Design (NC), D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts (MA), University of Arkansas, Cameron Art Museum (NC), Wingate University (NC), North Carolina Museum of Art; representation: Blue Spiral (NC).