***Mini Challenge #535: Framed

Started 8 months ago | Discussions thread
abiquiuense Senior Member • Posts: 4,098
WPA Furniture; New Mexico Style (Entry Two)

The "Great Depression," brought the WPA and the CCC to northern New Mexico.  It also brought unionization, in the form of the "SPMDTU," which I'll treat at another time.

During the depression, academic artists fell upon quaint northern NM.  Our church was no exception to the experiments.  John Gaw Meem, with local help, redesigned, and rebuilt Santo Tomas Apostol de Abiquiu, and other churches.  Into the interior went much "handiwork."  Many paisanos participated.

Professions like teaching, medicine, law enforcement, law, and the priesthood, took a back seat to things that the vicinity could sink its hands into.

My dad was no exception and bit the artsy, craftsy, till the soil type of training offered by a local non-academic school's offerings.  He studied cabinetry at "El Rito Normal School."  He conveyed the motives that Meem had brought in from UNM into his cabinetry.

By the time I was born, my mom and he had lacerations on their hands from learning and doing the cabinetry posted above.  She taught him the math, he put his immensely powerful hands into the knives.

I call it WPA Cabinetry.  Those square dowels indicate that this furniture doesn't use metal in place of its mortise and tenon joinery.

Sure wish the government had taken a better interest in us and offered us JD's, MD's, Ph.d's, Know What I mean?  On, the plus side, a houseful of furniture in the genre; tables, chairs, buffets, tea tables, miniature chair, dressers, closets, I still have the drawings.

So, buyers still come to NM to buy our quaint stuff.


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