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Woodturning News: General News

YANKTON DAILY PRESS & DAKOTAN: Last Call For The ‘Mighty Mo’ (09/01/2016)

Friday, September 2, 2016   (0 Comments)
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YANKTON DAILY PRESS & DAKOTAN: Last Call For The ‘Mighty Mo’ (09/01/2016)

YAA’s Annual Photo Show Wraps Up With Some Special Events Coming Out Of The Woodwork

This year’s installment of the Mighty Mo Photo Exhibit will end with fanfare this weekend when Yankton Area Arts (YAA) invites the public to visit historic GAR Hall Art Gallery for a number of special events.

“We will start the weekend of events tonight (Friday) with a reception and demonstration from 5-7 p.m. where we will be honoring master wood turner Dr. John Buckner of North Newton, Kansas,” said executive director Julie J. Amsberry. “Dr. Buckner will give a brief overview of woodturning, illustrated with a lathe and pieces made in his workshop. In addition, we will be presenting the winner of the People’s Choice Award for the Mighty Mo Photo Exhibit.”

Amsberry said that two judged winners had previously been named for their work in the show, which traditionally runs from July through early September. This year’s theme was the animals from the journals of Lewis and Clark.

“This year Sam Stukel for his photo ‘Black Hills Lion’ and Nancy Tesdall for her photo ‘Luna — Great Horned Owl’ were given honorable mention,” she said. “They were chosen by our judging panel on fitting the theme, originality, presentation and technical aspects. The People’s Choice award has been voted on by everyone who has come in and visited the exhibit.”

Noting that the exhibit will officially end Monday, Amsberry said this will be the perfect weekend to visit the gallery and enjoy the photographs and the wood turning demonstration.

“We are very excited to have Dr. Buckner join us both Friday and Saturday,” she said. “Friday, the demonstration and artist reception will be very educational and fun to watch. We hope that everyone then comes back on Saturday where they can participate in a free hands-on workshop.”

Saturday’s workshop will be under a tent in front of GAR Hall, from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. The workshop will introduce children and adults to the art of carving wood on a lathe. Participants will have guided, hands-on experience making a top, wand, yo-yo, pen or coaster from wood. They can color the wood and use pyrography — wood burning — to decorate what they’ve made. After applying a finish, they can take home their work.

“The workshop will be under the direction of John (Buckner),” Amsberry said. “His work is available in the YAA Gallery gift shop throughout the year.”

Working with Buckner will be Dick Reece, of Austin, Texas and Justin Church, of Boulder, Colorado.

Buckner has been turning wood for 70 years. His father was an expert woodworker and built most of the family’s furniture from walnut wood harvested from their southwest Missouri farm. Some of the wood is still being shaped.

With degrees from the University of Northern Colorado and the University of Kansas, Dr. Buckner taught at Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas, where he retired as professor emeritus of music. He lives and turns in North Newton, Kansas. He’s a member of the American Association of Wood-turners.

Buckner’s beautiful, useful objects are made from domestic and exotic hardwoods. Each piece is a unique. He takes pride in his finishes, allowing weeks for varnishes and lacquers to cure. He then triple-buffs and hard waxes the finishes.  

Children and adults wanting to try their hand at turning may simply drop by, or may call the gallery at (605) 665-9754 before Saturday morning, to reserve a 15-minute time slot, Amsberry said. There will be no charge for the materials or instruction. However, free-will donations are welcome.

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