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"Why We Make Things and Why It Matters: The Education of a Craftsman"

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Aired on Monday, April 14th.

On this edition of our show, we offer an interesting chat with Peter Korn, the founder and executive director of the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship, a non-profit school in Rockport, Maine. A furniture-maker since 1974, Korn is also the author of several noted how-to books, yet his latest volume is, so to speak, more of a "why" book. It's a readable and far-reaching memoir called "Why We Make Things and Why It Matters: The Education of a Craftsman" --- and he discusses it with us today. As was noted of this work recently in Booklist: "Drawing on his decades of experience handcrafting fine furniture, Korn's previous books have primarily focused on teaching woodworking to neophytes, including the bestselling 'Woodworking Basics' (2003). In this inspired departure from such how-to guides, Korn explores the fundamental reasons why he and other artistically inclined hobbyists and professionals passionately devote themselves to their craft, often for little recognition or monetary gain. Against the backdrop of a consumer marketplace saturated with machine-manufactured goods, Korn asks readers to consider what makes creative work so rewarding, what the nature of those rewards actually are, and what making things can reveal about our deeper nature. In answering these questions, Korn describes his own life as a crucible of self-discovery, recounting how his middle-class Philadelphia upbringing led to carpentry work, then designing furniture, then teaching woodworking, and finally to founding a furniture-making school in Maine. Written with as much attention to polished prose as the author gives to his woodworking, Korn's book is a stirring testimonial for self-fulfillment through craftsmanship, whatever form it takes."

Rich Fisher passed through KWGS about thirty years ago, and just never left. Today, he is the general manager of Public Radio Tulsa, and the host of KWGS’s public affairs program, StudioTulsa, which celebrated its twentieth anniversary in August 2012 . As host of StudioTulsa, Rich has conducted roughly four thousand long-form interviews with local, national, and international figures in the arts, humanities, sciences, and government. Very few interviews have gone smoothly. Despite this, he has been honored for his work by several organizations including the Governor's Arts Award for Media by the State Arts Council, a Harwelden Award from the Arts & Humanities Council of Tulsa, and was named one of the “99 Great Things About Oklahoma” in 2000 by Oklahoma Today magazine.
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