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2024 Award of Distinction Recipient

Furni­ture Maker, Designer, Educator

The Furni­ture Society is thrilled to announce Michael Hurwitz as a 2024/2025 Award of Distinction honoree.

Michael’s award will be presented at a luncheon cere­mony during the Furni­ture Soci­ety’s 2025 in-person confer­ence (loca­tion and date TBD). Addi­tional regional events are being planned for the Fall of 2025.

Michael Hurwitz

Michael Hurwitz has been making studio furni­ture for forty-five years, since earning his BFA from Boston University’s Program in Artistry in 1979. His work is included in several public collec­tions, includ­ing the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, MA, the Philadel­phia Museum of Art, PA, the Smith­son­ian Museum of Amer­i­can Art, Wash­ing­ton, DC and the Metro­pol­i­tan Museum of Art in NY. He has received numer­ous grants and awards includ­ing fellow­ships from the Mass­a­chu­setts Endow­ment for the Arts, Penn­syl­va­nia Council on the Arts, National Endow­ment for the Arts, Tiffany Foun­da­tion, Pew Char­i­ta­ble Trust, the Japan Foun­da­tion, and the US-Japan Friend­ship Commis­sion. His recent honors include becom­ing Fellow of the Amer­i­can Craft Council, a Mont­gomery Fellow of Dart­mouth College, and receiv­ing a Masters of the Medium Award from the Renwick Alliance and a Vision­ary Artist Award from the Smithsonian Museum.

Hurwitz strives to make furni­ture that is time­less, elegant, and respect­ful of the nature of the mate­ri­als. Toward that end he has commit­ted to a way of working that includes gener­at­ing a great quan­tity of studies, mock-ups and exper­i­ments with mate­ri­als for most new work. Currently he has inten­si­fied his career-long focus on allow­ing the phys­i­cal struc­ture of the work to define its pres­ence. The inter­est in maxi­miz­ing the strength-to-weight ratio and search­ing for the place where that balance exists most harmo­niously contin­ues to be a primary direc­tive for him.

For Hurwitz, the commit­ment to the careful making of an object is an impor­tant part of the work’s iden­tity. He believes that fine crafts­man­ship includes more than the knowl­edge of mate­ri­als and the expe­ri­ence of prac­tice— it also asks that you enter into empathy with the mate­r­ial, and to be fully present and respon­sive within that union. His hope is that this spirit is embod­ied in the work and is palpa­ble for the viewer.