Rick Cook

P.O. Box 871, Port Orford, Oregon 97465




Artist Bio and Statement


Coming back from a trip south, as I rounded the Oregon Coast Highway north of Humbug Mountian, I noticed a small hamlet off in the distance. I had driven through the day before and didn’t even notice the place. I pulled into town and rented a room in the Neptune Motel overlooking the port. It was January, 1976 and I was looking for a new life.

The next morning, the sky was clear and the day was soon to warm up. The weather was what some call a “Chamber of Commerce Day”. After getting some breakfast at the Rainbow Café, I went in search of a real estate office. The only one open was C. A. Smith Real Estate. Sales person, Carol Sutton, took me to look at several houses, but the first one she showed me was the one that fit my likes. It was the old Bernal Forty house on Oregon Street. The house was built in the early-mid 1890's by P. J. Lindberg. It was in need of some love and care. I reckoned I could fix it up and in the future, establish a business.

My artistic journey got it’s start while living in Laguna Beach, California in the 1960's. After moving to Elmira, Oregon in 1970, I developed a student-mentor relationship with Jan Zach, Professor of Sculpture at the University of Oregon. Zach gave me new vision and a restlessness. I found a need to create. In 1975 I picked up a copy of Fine Woodworking and found my direction. This was an inherited decision, you might say. My Cook ancestors were joiners and cabinet makers in southwest England. My ancestor Aaron Cooke arrived in the new world in 1630. He was an early Connecticut River Valley furniture maker of Windsor. His offspring continued the craft in Massachusetts, Western New York and Michigan, where I was born.

Now the Cook’s were going to make furniture in Oregon. Bernal Forty’s old garage, next to the house would become my studio. I tooled up with mostly used Sears and Roebuck equipment and hand tools scored at secondhand stores and yard sales. I had done some crude woodworking while in Elmira but I needed some better training. I went to work for Tracey Hassett at the Wooden Nickel. Hassett was building kitchen cabinets at the time. His storefront was mostly weaving and fabric supplies and some Myrtlewood products. Hassett taught me the basics of cabinet work and general woodworking.

By 1985, I had remodeled the interior of my house and turned it into an art gallery. It became a showcase for my furniture as well as work by many Southwestern Oregon Artists.

I love being at my shop. Every morning, I look forward to spending the day playing in my “Man Cave”.



"Crafts Now 81" Juried, Coos Art Museum, Coos Bay, Oregon 1981

"Wood Craft Artisans of Port Orford, Oregon", Humbug Mountain Committee (Port Orford Arts Council) Exhibition, Heads Wayside State Park, Port Orford, Oregon 1982

"Invitational Functional Craft Exhibition" Coos Art Museum, Coos Bay, Oregon 1983

"For the Home, Craft Exhibition" Coos Art Museum, Coos Bay, Oregon 1989

"Wood Works" Invitational, Signature Gallery, San Diego, California 1990

"Artisans Show Case" Invitational, Coos Art Museum, Coos Bay, Oregon 1991

Two Person Show, Hallie Brown Ford Gallery, Umpqua Valley Arts Association, Roseburg, Oregon 1996

“Artisan Show Case”, Invitational, Coos Art Museum. Coos Bay, Oregon 1997“Wood and Fiber Show”

Hallie Brown Ford Gallery, Umpqua Valley Arts Association, Roseburg, Oregon, Dec/Jan, 2006/07



Articles and Photos Published about Rick Cook

Oregon Advocates for the Arts, Oregon Arts Week Poster, Photo of My Work Featured, 1989

Woodworker West Magazine, Los Angeles, California, May-June 1996

Woodworker West Magazine, Los Angeles, California, May-June 1999

Esquire Magazine, Art of Living, Tokyo, Japan, March 2002

Independent Sawmill and Woodlot Management Magazine, Belfast, Maine, July 2011

Various local and regional news papers and publications



Second Street Gallery, Bandon Oregon

Northwest Collectors Gallery, Bandon, Oregon

Seaborne Gallery, North Bend, Oregon

Made in Oregon, Eugene, Oregon

Cogley Art Center, Klamath Falls, Oregon

Signature Gallery, San Diego, California



The Cook Gallery, Port Orford, Oregon



Port Orford Arts Council, 1981-2001 Served as President, Vice President, Treasure and Board Member at Large

Director - Port Orford Arts Festival, 1989-1996

Managing Editor "Artscape" Literary Magazine, 1990-1991

Wood Shop Instructor, South West Oregon Community College, 1998-2001

Wood Working Judge, Coos County Fair, 2000-2006


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