Katrina Tompkins is one of 43 fine woodworkers who are showcased in the exhibition Making a Seat at the Table: Women Transform Woodworking. We conducted a brief interview via email to find out more about her work.
Why is this exhibition important to you?
If she can see it she can be it. When I was just getting started in Sheridan College’s Furniture Craft & Design program (Ontario) I learned about women in this exhibition, like Wendy and Roseanne; seeing their work in books was integral to believing that I could find a place in craft furniture, too.
I feel somewhat sentimental about the craft furniture community; it is a true and generous community that spans generations and I am grateful to have made new friends in furniture south of the border.
What advice would you give your younger self about getting into woodworking?
I’d say to myself, Katrina, your best works are the ones that are uniquely you. Tap into that and follow through.
Which piece in the exhibition stood out the most to you?
Teresa Audet’s ’Smile Honey’ and Fo Wilson’s ‘Black Lamp’. Those women know what is happening and package it back for society with humour and heart-wrenching truth that makes me want to laugh and cry at the same time.