David Ellsworth

2021 Visionary Award Recipient

David Ellsworth, master woodturner, describes his primary influences as “the energy and beauty of Native American ceramics, the architecture of the American Southwest with its textures, tones and monumentality, and the natural beauty of the material of wood – what I refer to as the most perfectly imperfect material to work with.” He is considered one of the most prominent woodturners in the world, famous for developing his elegant thin-walled hollow forms, which may even be as thin as 1/16th of an inch. Additionally, he created and marketed the bent turning tools needed to produce this vessel-like form. Ellsworth is also known for advancing the discipline of woodturning as a legitimate craft art form. The work of David Ellsworth is included in the permanent collection of over forty-three museums internationally, including the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. 

ellsworthstudios.com

Rago/Wright is privileged to participate in celebrating these extraordinary artists and supporting one of our nation’s most important cultural institutions.

The Smithsonian Women's Committee Visionary Benefit Auction

Works Sold to Benefit The Smithsonian Institution

Wright is pleased to include The Smithsonian Women’s Committee Visionary Benefit Auction within our Art & Design sale on April 21st. This special section features works created by past and present Smithsonian Visionary Artists and by the winners of the new Smithsonian Women’s Committee Delphi Award. 

The Smithsonian Visionary Award, established in 2014, is presented annually to artists who are deemed by curators in the field to have risen to the pinnacle in the world of sculptural arts and design, who have works in major museums, and who have demonstrated distinction, creativity, artistry, and, of course, vision in his or her respective medium.  

This extraordinary event features works by current and past recipients of the Visionary Award including Mary Lee Hu, Chunghi Choo, David Ellsworth, Michael Hurwitz, Patti Warashina, Toots Zynsky, Wendell Castle, and Albert Paley.

The Delphi Award was created in 2020 and is presented annually to one or more mid-career artists who demonstrate distinction, creativity, and exceptional artistry in their work, and who are predicted by experts in the field to reach the pinnacle of sculptural arts and design. Roberto Lugo was one of the initial recipients of the Delphi Award in 2021.  


All lots in the Visionary Benefit Auction are of the primary market, unless otherwise indicated. The auction raises funds to support projects and initiatives across the Smithsonian institution. All works will be shipped directly from the artist or the gallery.