Thursday, September 11, 2008, 7:00 pm Shaker Heritage Society Meetinghouse Albany-Shaker Road, Albany, NY
What Is Shaker Furniture?
By Jerry Grant
Jerry Grant is the Director of Research and Library Services at the Shaker Museum and Library in Old Chatham, New York. His professional training is as a librarian with a specialty in rare books and archives. Jerry has been on the staff of the Shaker Museum and Library since 1987 and has worked in jobs related to the history and practices of the Shakers for nearly thirty years. He is the co-author with Douglas Allen of Shaker Furniture Makers and Noble but Plain: The Shaker Meetinghouse at Mount Lebanon. While choosing a career in research and rare books, Jerry has worked both as a curator and as a craftsman - making replicas of Shaker oval boxes.
For years there have been debates about what is or is not Shaker Furniture. Jerry will present an illustrated lecture on changing opinions of what is included in the phrase, "Shaker Furniture." Early writers on the Shakers focused on a very limited number of pieces of furniture that met their stylistic criteria for being included in the category of Shaker furniture. Over the years the definition of what is Shaker has broadened, but Jerry believes it has begun to once again contract. He will show examples of this change and give his opinion on what it is that makes something not only a piece of Shaker furniture but an exciting piece of Shaker furniture. Members of the Shaker Heritage Society have been invited to join us at this meeting.