Yours truly served as the project manager for the woodworking contractor of the new Brown Life Science Building in Providence Rhode Island. I thought I was was pretty cool for managing such a large and prestigious project.. Then my father handed me his digital camera the other day, showing me pictures of a recent project which was built by Cemal Tokgoz in Bursa... You can no doubt tell which pictures are which:
The three pieces by Cemal which are pictured are probably worth more than the whole entire Brown University millwork project. In all likelihood, the hand skills, talent and experience required for such intricate woodwork, doesn't exist in the United States, period.
What the pictures don't tell you is that I apprenticed under my father's wing since the age of 10, and that my father apprenticed under Cemal Tokgoz, and continues to be his pupil to this day... I consider it an honor to be the plankton of this woodworking food-chain. Wouldn't you?
One of the things which amazes me and everyone else who meets Cemal Tokgoz in person is his physique: He is less than four feet tall... I hope to see him again and kiss his hand one more time while he is still living.. -AT