“My furniture is inspired by the clean lines of the Shaker form, allowing the highly figured domestic and exotic woods I use to be the focal point. This adds an artistic and functional facet to each piece.”
Tom Dumke is a self-taught woodworker with a deep respect for the furniture craftsmen of the 17th and 18th centuries. Their knowledge of form, balance, joinery, and wood movement is evident in the pieces of fine furniture that still exist today. Dumke relies on the shared expertise of those craftsmen from long ago and those of today.
The Shakers have had a profound influence on Dumke’s work with their clean, unadorned simplicity, and the functionality and craftsmanship of their furniture. Whether building an exact reproduction or drawing inspiration for his own designs, Dumke keeps the basic Shaker tenets in mind. His pieces are intended to harmonize with the environment, and he uses native, sustainably harvested solid wood species in his work.
Tom Dumke grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and learned a solid work ethic from his father, a controller for Delco Electronics. From Dumke’s earliest years, he was always curious about how things worked and how things were constructed. By examining how things were made, Dumke developed an appreciation for the careful and precise use of tools. He is a self-taught furniture maker.