Originally from East Aurora, NY, Karen Ernst is a Professor of Woodworking / Furniture Design in the Art Department at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, recently renamed PennWest University. She received a BA in Studio Art from SUNY Geneseo and an MFA in Furniture Design from the Rhode Island School of Design and has over twenty years of woodworking and design experience. The furniture and sculptural objects she designs and builds have been exhibited in numerous museums and galleries across the US and are included in many private collections. Her work is featured in the Lark Books publications 500 Chairs, 500 Tables and 500 Cabinets.
Karen has been a member of the Furniture Society’s Board of Trustees since 2018 and currently serves as its President.
The furniture and sculptural objects Karen Ernst designs and builds draw inspiration from natural shapes, textures, and landscapes she has observed in her travels to many of the National Parks across the US. Whether it is the silhouette of a tree branch, an impression left by a rock in the sand, or the surface of the ocean, she seeks to capture a bit of the beauty and magic present in our most unspoiled natural places.
- Edinboro, PA
- Wood, paint
- Professional Status
- Educator, maker