Award winning chair maker Rory Jaros is returning to Paradise City Art Fair Oct. 6, 7, and 8 at the tri-county fairgrounds in Northampton, Mass.
        Jaros, self-named "Artisan at Large",  employs simple tools and time-honored techniques in rendering his classic post-and-rung chairs. His inviting Walden Rocker is one of seven basic styles, which are reminiscent of the Shaker tradition. For all of his structures, he uses ring porous hardwood rivings, the strongest units of wood one can get from a tree. Jaros steam-bends, meticulously shapes, and assembles the oak and walnut pieces so that the furnished product comfortably holds the human frame. Each has a sturdy, woven hickory bark seat.
        Although he is no stranger to the mainstream - his work can be viewed at - Jaros is a pioneer of alternative courses. He makes electricity from the sun, raises his own food, and strives in his work to maintain that link to the earth. The notion "think globally, act locally" is one that strikes a resonant cord with Jaros. His work represents an equitable engagement with the land, and reflects the heritage of four generations of craftsmanship.
        His appearance at this event will provide an opportunity for visitors to experience the comfort of the Walden Rocker and to be fitted for one of their own. Jaros' distinctive works have won numerous awards, including second place at the St. Louis Art Fair; the Netti Hart Award at the 2000 57th Street Art Fair; and Best of Show at the 1999 Uptown Art Fair. Most of his work is by comission.
        Jaros pivots from his home/studio, tucked into the sylvan beauty of the Shawnee National Forest. He can be seen "at large" set up at various sidewalk venues thoughout Southern Illinois with his bench and chisels, paring away at another of his unique sitting structures.

        His work is retailed and can be viewed year round at Associated Artists Gallery in Carbondale and Visions Gallery on the Boardwalk in Makanda, Illinois. His work is also sold at the Southern Illinois Artisan Shop and Visitor's Center in Whittington, Illinois. While in Massachusetts in October he will be available to demonstrate some of his techniques and to talk about his craft.

                                                                July 12, 2001