The American Furniture Masters Institute (AFMI) is the nonprofit 501(c)(3) parent organization that oversees the New Hampshire Furniture Masters Certification Program. AFMI administers educational endeavors that preserve the art of fine furniture making including the Prison Outreach Programs in New Hampshire and Maine and the Alden Artisan Advancement, a scholarship to support emerging artists.
The New Hampshire Furniture Masters is a group of professional furniture makers committed to preserving the centuries-long tradition of fine furniture making. The Furniture Masters promote the growth and sales of the fine furniture made by their members through hosting exhibitions, engaging in collaborative marketing and educational activities, and partnering with museums, art organizations and galleries. The Furniture Masters strive to uphold the highest standard of quality craftsmanship through a peer reviewed jury system.
History of the Furniture Masters
In 1993, furniture makers David Lamb, Bill Thomas, Jere Osgood, Terry Moore, Lenore Howe and Brian Braskie and community members John Frisbee, Allison Banks, Jen Lucic, Mary McLaughlin and Tony Hartigan formed the New Hampshire Furniture Masters Association. The founders had one goal in mind: to build public awareness of New Hampshire’s fine furniture makers and to cultivate an audience for their goods closer to home.
Inspired by the rich furniture-making legacy of the 18th and 19th century New Hampshire cabinetmakers such as Samuel Dunlap, Langley Boardman, and Judkins and Senter, the Furniture Masters look forward as well as back. Their work encompasses all styles of furniture, from traditional to contemporary. As artists and masters of a craft that reaches deep into the quality of daily life, they are committed to cultivating and teaching new furniture makers, educating the public, and creating enduring works of outstanding quality.
Our Exhibition Gallery in Concord, NH provides us with a year-round venue for exhibits and events to promote the craft of studio furniture making in New England. Exhibits rotate regularly and highlight the work of the Masters as well as guest artists and participants of our education programs. Visit our Gallery at 49 South Main Street in the heart of the arts district of downtown Concord, NH.
All work supported by the Furniture Masters members is subject to a jury of masters who apply established standards of design, structural integrity, and workmanship. Through mutual regard and collegial competition, the Masters challenge one another to do the best work possible. Jurors include Masters and museum curators.
The Main Event
Each year, the Furniture Masters host an annual fundraiser showcasing and celebrating the exceptional work that has been completed throughout the year. This culminating event provides an opportunity to view remarkable fine furniture and mingle with the Masters and fellow supporters of fine furniture. Work created by participants of the Prison Outreach Programs in New Hampshire and Maine and work by the Alden Artisan Advancement recipient are also showcased.
As a Celebration of Craft, we include several special performances and mini-events during the course of the evening, along with a spirited silent auction of smaller and less expensive items created especially for this event. Click here to learn more.