Handcrafting Perfection

Handcrafting Perfection

On Saturday night, I somehow got lost in Midtown Manhattan, which was a little embarrassing for me for two reasons: First, I’ve lived in the Big Apple for six years and second, this particular area is on a grid. I found myself walking up and down W. 55th street a few times looking for a restaurant. Each time I walked this stretch, I was drawn to a brightly lit storefront window, which displayed several glass objects exploding with color. Finally, I decided to go in. Where was I? Gallery 55, part of An American Craftsman Galleries, with locations in Manhattan, Massachusetts and Georgia. The cool thing about this gallery? Everything is handcrafted, from the large glass vases—some even produced by protégés of one of my favorite artists, Dale Chihuly—to paintings and wooden boxes with intricate designs, a process called boxolgy, mastered by the gallery’s owner, Richard Rothbard. My favorite piece is a large dining room table made of monkeypod wood, with elements of the wood’s grain still visible. With varying price points, from smaller items for $1.95, to some pieces in the thousand-plus range, this is the perfect spot to find a thoughtful gift for yourself or a loved one. Most pieces even come with a bio sheet of the artist, so you can show off your newfound knowledge with a friend. 150 W. 55th St., btw Sixth & Seventh aves., 212.757.7757, anamericancraftsman.com, boxology.com

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