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Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

The San Francisco area woodworker Arthur Espenet Carpenter was one of the most celebrated figures in the postwar American Studio Furniture movement. Like George Nakashima, Sam Maloof, Wendell Castle and other craftsmen of the era, Carpenter built furniture both as a means of creative expression and for the simple personal fulfillment of making a thing well. The excellence of their work stood in high relief against the mass-produced goods made of synthetic materials that became prevalent in the mid-20th century. Born in New York City during the Jazz Age, Carpenter earned a degree in economics from Dartmouth College and initially intended to become an accountant, like his father. But after serving four years in the United States Navy in the Pacific during World War II, Carpenter had a change of heart about entering the business world. Back in New York, he became an Asian-arts dealer but finally found a true sense of direction when visiting the “Good Design” shows held in that era at the Museum of Modern Art. Carpenter was particularly taken with the hand-turned wooden bowls by James Prestini and decided he wanted to make objects himself. To get far from New York, he drove to San Francisco at age 28, bought a lathe and, with the help of a G.I. Bill small-business stipend, opened a woodworking shop in the Mission District. Carpenter started out making bowls, sold through local high-end retailers such as Geary’s. His skills improved, and within a few years Carpenter had moved to the coastal town of Bolinas, California, where he built furniture on commission. His national reputation was sealed when in 1972 — somewhat to Carpenter’s own surprise — his designs were shown by the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery in the exhibition “Woodworks,” alongside those of Nakashima, Maloof, Castle and the Philadelphia-area craftsman Wharton Esherick. Carpenter defined a new design aesthetic now known as the “California roundover” — a style characterized by flowing lines and gently-contoured edges that make wood feel almost supple to the touch. The graceful and comfortable Wishbone chair, so named for the tapered supports that form its legs, is Carpenter’s signature design. The chairs, typically made of black walnut, are usually priced in the range of $20,000 a piece. Because of its simplicity and economy of materials, Carpenter’s furniture works well in any informal, unfussy decor — though it is particularly striking in a modern environment. As you will see on these pages, the work of Arthur Espenet Carpenter is both friendly and exquisite. The quality of its craftsmanship is impeccable, and it exudes the gentle warmth of the lovingly handmade object.
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Creator: Arthur Espenet Carpenter
1967 Arthur Espenet Carpenter Black Walnut Dining Table
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Oakland, CA
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Black Walnut Dining Table This exquisite dining table is characterized by its long rectangular top with gently curved side...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Walnut

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Captains Chair. Red Lacquer, Black Leather. Signed.
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Kansas City, MO
Rare "Captains Chair" by Arthur Espenet Carpenter. Original red lacquered wood and black leather seat. Overall very good condition with areas of wear including where the legs meet ...
Category

1980s American Modern Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Leather, Wood

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Wishbone Chair
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Chicago, IL
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Wishbone Chair, Walnut Frame with vellum sling seat. Carved signature and number to the underside of the chair ‘Espenet 8010 3 ...
Category

1980s American Organic Modern Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Walnut

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Roll-Top Desk 1979
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Chicago, IL
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Roll-Top Desk 1979, in American black walnut. Features:Inlay rosewood butterflies. Three pencil drawers lined in felt. Multiple drawer and puzzle storage bo...
Category

1970s American Organic Modern Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Felt, Walnut

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Three-Legged Occasional Table
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Chicago, IL
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Three-Legged Occasional Table in solid birch trapezoidal top with turned oak legs that pierce the top and are exposed as a design detail. Signed on underside...
Category

1970s American American Craftsman Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Burl

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Turned Charger in Primavera, 1956
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Dallas, TX
A rare Arthur Espenet Carpenter turned charger in Primavera wood with brass inserts. Signed and dated 1956.
Category

1950s Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Wood

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Teardrop Table in Solid Walnut
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Chicago, IL
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Teardrop Table in Solid Flamed Walnut
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Walnut

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Walnut & Enameled Steel Dining Table, 1987, Signed
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Los Angeles, CA
This exquisite dining table (or monumental center table) by Arthur Espenet Carpenter, signed by the artist underneath: 'Espenet 8706', dating this work to 1987, features a monumental...
Category

1980s American Post-Modern Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Steel

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Dining Table
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Chicago, IL
Arthur “Espenet” carpenter dining table, solid walnut hand carved details with 2 leaves [Signed ESPENET ‘70].    
Category

1970s American American Craftsman Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Walnut

Arthur Espenet Carpenter, Unique Double-Trunk Table Desk
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Chicago, IL
Arthur Espenet Carpenter, unique double-trunk table desk. This extraordinary table is unique to Espenet's work as it deviates from the traditional rectilinear form with its well-f...
Category

1980s American American Craftsman Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Ebony, Mahogany

Bar Stool by Arthur Espenet Carpenter, USA, 1960s
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Berlin, DE
Bar stool in Rawhide by Arthur Espenet Carpenter, 1960s. Arthur Espenet Carpenter (1920-2006) was an American furniture designer and craftsman. He was born in San Francisco, Californ...
Category

1960s American American Craftsman Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Leather, Wood

Arthur Espenet Carpenter, "Wishbone” Chair circa 1970s, Stamped
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Wargrave, Berkshire
Arthur Espenet Carpenter, California, USA, circa early 1970s "Wishbone" chair of African Hyedua and brown leather strapping. Stamped to the underside "Espenet", he chose not to sign ...
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Leather

Rare Pair of Wishbone Chairs by Arthur Espenet Carpenter
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Atlanta, GA
A rare pair of wishbone armchairs studio made by Arthur Espenet Carpenter (1920-2006), Bolinas, CA. In grained walnut with visible dowel construction, a shaped back that continues in...
Category

1980s American Modern Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Walnut

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Walnut Table with Drawer
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in San Mateo, CA
Side table in walnut by Arthur Espenet Carpenter, (1920-2006). This table has a single drawer below the top. The solid walnut sides and top are joined with dovetail joints. The runne...
Category

1970s American Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Walnut

Signed Arthur Espenet Carpenter Rawhide Stool
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in New York, NY
Signed, Arthur Espenet carpenter (American, 1920-2006) Rare, Rawhide stool, circa 1972. Rawhide stool was made through a process known as bent lamination,” in which the seat frame an...
Category

1970s American American Craftsman Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Wood, Leather

Arthur Espenet Carpenter 'Sedua Wishbone' Armchair
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Los Angeles, CA
A 'Sedua Wishbone' armchair by Arthur Espenet Carpenter, in walnut with leather straps, circa 1972.  Stamped.
Category

Mid-20th Century Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Materials

Leather, Walnut

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Previously Available Items
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Studio Craft Swivel Stool
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Walnut studio craft swivel stool by California designer, Arthur Espenet Carpenter, circa 1970s. The stool features a woven leather slung seat with sculpted wood L-shape frame. The st...
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Arthur Espenet Carpenter Carved Walnut & Brass Wine Rack, circa 1967
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in Costa Mesa, CA
Arthur Espenet Carpenter carved walnut & brass wine rack. circa 1967.
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20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

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Brass

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Side Table
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
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A modernist side table in oak burl by Arthur Espenet Carpenter III.
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Arthur Espenet Carpenter Side Table
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Side Table
H 17.5 in W 28 in D 29 in
Arthur Espenet Chest of Drawers
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An important studio chest of drawers/dresser by Arthur Espenet Carpenter featuring exaggerated dovetailing and striking vertical drawer pulls. Note the chamfer details. It’s signe...
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1980s American Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Arthur Espenet Chest of Drawers
Arthur Espenet Chest of Drawers
H 33 in W 54 in D 19 in
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Wood Bench
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
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Arthur Espenet Carpenter (1920–2006) california craftsman wood bench. Signed "Espenet 69128" (made in 1969 and the 128th piece). We believe its eastern walnut...
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1960s Vintage Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Arthur Espenet Carpenter Wood Bench
Arthur Espenet Carpenter Wood Bench
H 16.75 in W 34 in D 19 in
Rare Arthur Espenet Carpenter Turned Teak Bowl American Studio Craft
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
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Large turned wood centerpiece bowl. Signed. P.915 Espenet, Siamese teak.
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Pair of Arthur Espenet Carpenter "Wishbone" Armchairs
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
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Finely detailed and rare pair of walnut "Wishbone" armchairs handcrafted by Northern California master craftsman Arthur "Espenet" Carpenter, circa 1999. Rarely seen matched pair of a...
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Arthur "Espenet" Carpenter Wine Rack
By Arthur Espenet Carpenter
Located in San Diego, CA
Carved walnut and brass six bottle wine rack by Arthur "Espenet" Carpenter. Piece is hand signed "Espenet 67."
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Arthur Espenet Carpenter Furniture

Arthur Espenet Carpenter furniture for sale on 1stDibs.

Arthur Espenet Carpenter furniture are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive items are frequently made of wood and are designed with extraordinary care. There are many options to choose from in our collection of Arthur Espenet Carpenter furniture, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. Many of the original furniture by Arthur Espenet Carpenter were created in the modern style in united states during the 20th century. If you’re looking for additional options, many customers also consider furniture by David Ebner, and Wharton Esherick. Prices for Arthur Espenet Carpenter furniture can differ depending upon size, time period and other attributes — on 1stDibs, these items begin at $3,500 and can go as high as $95,000, while a piece like these, on average, fetch $18,000.

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