Richard Vierra - Biography
Raised on a farm in West Sacramento, Richard Vierra became a craftsman in his early years, working in many artistic mediums including copper, leather, and wood. Growing up on a working farm, he also became a mechanic, a welder, a plumber, and an electrician, as well as developing all of the other skills necessary to keep a farm running. Eventually Richard moved to Roseville, then on the outskirts of town, and now resides with his wife Karen on a greenbelt next to a creek, thus his business name, Creekside Turnery.
After receiving his lathe as a Christmas present one year, Richard quickly became enthralled and began turning out pens, pencils and letter openers. Next, he turned his attention to turning his “one-of-a-kind” wine stoppers made from Chardonnay grape stock he got from Bogle’s Winery in Clarksburg Ca., where he at one time had been a wine maker. These unique wine stoppers are made from carefully selected stock and their shape determined by the imperfections in the wood. They are collected by wine connoisseurs around the world.
Vierra’s interest naturally moved on to turned bowls, vases, and unique vessels . Richard has worked with wood now for over 50 years, constantly striving to perfect and maximize the natural beauty of each piece. Natural edged bowls made from black walnut root stock are just one of the things he is known for. The particular roots used to make his walnut bowls have bold, dramatic and unusual grain patterns that when turned, beckon the art enthusiast to enjoy the many dimensions of each piece. Each one is finely finished and feel like smooth velvet, a joy to hold and caress.
Basically Vierra has mastered his trade through trial and error as he is mainly self taught; however, he had the rare opportunity to study under two world acclaimed wood turners; Nick Cook at the Campbell School of Fine Arts in North Carolina and Mike Mahoney of Provo, Utah.
“I am entranced as the wood’s character unveils itself during the turning process and am amazed as what Mother Nature has created”. ~Richard Vierra