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If You Were Not in Your Current Career, What Path Would You Take?

If You Were Not in Your Current Career, What Path Would You Take?

If You Were Not in Your Current Career, What Path Would You Take?

December/January 2013 issue of American Craft magazine
Author Staff
Sonya Clark Afro Abe

Sonya Clark, Afro Abe II (one in a series of 44), 2008-12; $5 bill, thread; 4 x 6 in. Photo: Taylor Dabney


If I were not a visual artist, I probably would be a psychologist, because I find the interiority of others to be endlessly fascinating. And actually, a large part of what I enjoy about exhibiting my work is that it gives me an opportunity to study people in a controlled environment.
~Christina West, sculptor, Atlanta

Without a doubt, I would be re­­searching and inventing new recipes full time. Everything about cooking appeals to me: from the selection of the ingredients to the composition of flavors on the palate and colors on the plate to the mastery of the tools. Then there is the immediate, unquestionable success of the effort manifested in clean plates and happy bellies. All of this goodness would be served up in handmade glasses, plates, and bowls. Of course, Tom Colicchio already took the best name for a restaurant: Craft!
~Sonya Clark, ACC trustee and chair of craft/material studies department, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA

If I had not chosen a career in handmade furniture, especially in light of all the technological advancements of recent years, I probably would have pursued a more practical path. I could see myself as a wheelwright, bookbinder, or even a lamplighter!
~Geoffrey Keating, furniture maker, Colorado Springs, CO

I knew at a young age that I wanted to live on the coast of New England and work with my hands. Despite a degree in criminal justice and a couple years working at my dad’s law firm in my late teens, I knew that my life would revolve around the water. If my passion for building wooden surfboards never came about, I’d most likely still be working on boats, as a captain or boat builder.
~Mike Lavecchia, founder, Grain Surfboards, York, ME

I would be a practitioner and teacher of tai chi chuan, a ceramic artist, a fashion designer, and a chiropractor.
~Chakaia Booker, artist, New York

A doctor. I would have loved to fuse both Eastern and Western practices to not only heal sick people, but also promote a lifestyle that prevents illnesses. I would have loved to collaborate with service designers and architects to build a radically different kind of hospital – the kind that aims to provide all occupants and customers with whatever is necessary to promote a meaningful and sustainable life.
~Seung Chan Lim, author and designer, Providence, RI