Tomas Braverman: Sparkling Spanish Revival


Tomas Braverman’s path in woodworking has been formed
by mentors and serendipitous occasions. Within the early 1960s,
when he was residing in a storage in Los Angeles and the room
he used as his store was barely 10 x 10, Braverman met Nicolas
Vera, a Mayan-Mexican cabinetmaker who had no place to
reside. Tomas gave Nicolas a spot to sleep within the
rafters, and Nicolas started educating Tomas how to
construct furnishings within the Mexican Colonial model. The
first desk the 2 made collectively offered
instantly–when the actor Larry Hagman occurred to see
Braverman’s hand-carved signal and drove down the
driveway. Hagman and his spouse would go on to purchase dozens of
items from Braverman over the following 30 years, and Braverman and
his Mexican mentor would work collectively for greater than a decade,
sharing the income from the items they made. Some tables
Braverman made on his personal had already offered to Rock Hudson,
and his shopper record quickly stuffed up with distinguished Hollywood

Braverman fed his ardour for conventional Hispanic furnishings by
touring to see it in individual. He made many journeys to Mexico,
the place he would woodwork of all types–gates, doorways,
fences, furnishings–and produce the concepts again to his Los Angeles
store to construct new items derived from the previous ones. Within the late
1960s he started touring to Spain as properly, and on one journey to
Seville he met a masterful conventional carver, Antonio
Rodriguez Garcia, and wound up staying to check with him for
two months. Braverman’s enterprise was booming, enabling him to
return yr after yr to spend one other month or two underneath
Rodriguez’s tutelage.

Within the mid-1990s Braverman and his spouse, Kiyo–who applies the
vintage finishes to all his items–moved from Los Angeles to
Hawaii, and Braverman handed on his store and his enterprise to
his longtime assistant, Ed Koda, whom Braverman describes as a
sensible craftsman.

Braverman, 75, nonetheless builds the occasional piece of furnishings
(like his spectacular vargueno on the Again Cowl of concern 253),
however spends a lot of his store time constructing ukuleles, using
Hawaii’s treasured timber, koa. He’s additionally a woodworking
mentor himself nowadays, passing on his woodworking
abilities to his son, Tony, and to his pal Clement Esaki.

On this audio slideshow Braverman describes his inspirations
and strategy to woodworking and presents excellent items
from throughout his lengthy, prolific profession.

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