vol. 9

Goldilocks

The Goldilocks zone: a region that is 'just right'.

For many artists, it's a challenge staying true to their craft at the same time as pursuing scale—and achieving widespread success.

Tom Hauburger is a furniture maker, woodworker, co-founder of Edison Furniture, and former Silicon Valley product manager. His quest with Edison is to make a living by making furniture, whilst staying true to the core tenets of care and craftsmanship and thoughtfulness, instilled in them at The Krenov School. In the words of Tom, one of the challenges has been "attempting to find that Goldilocks zone right in the middle" that is sustainable, a concept that is contrary to his former life working in Silicon Valley. Ever the perfectionist, Tom is also discovering what 'good' or 'perfect' means, and how wood, quite unlike software, has its own personality and its own medium.

Cynthia Chen is an artist, a rug maker and product designer at Stripe. Her rugs, inspired by nostalgic Asian snacks, have gone viral on Twitter, and she's been featured on popular publications like Apartment Therapy and Hypebeast. The virality of her delicious creations has presented the opportunity for her to scale with manufacturing. But Cynthia has held back: "If I make a hundred rugs, does it somehow diminish its existence as art and its value?" Another consideration, beyond the Goldilocks zone question, is whether her rugs are 'good enough to sell'. (Editor's note: They definitely are!)

In our ninth volume, discover the stories of two artists and builders, as they strive to create a sustainable business, in their own time, whilst protecting their ethos of producing art that is unique, well-crafted and thoughtful.

Enjoy the stories.

Tom Hauburger

One of the challenges of the program here historically has been attempting to find that Goldilocks zone right in the middle.

On Twitter, Tom's bio currently reads: working wood at Edison Furniture Co.

Cynthia Chen

I actively try not to frame myself as my profession.

Cynthia has grown comfortable calling herself a rug maker—as evidenced in her Twitter bio.

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