Christopher Lang presents Antique Alabama Furniture
By PHOEBE DONALD ROBINSON / Community Columnist
Christopher Lang, member of the Alabama Humanities Foundation’s Road Scholars Speakers Bureau, will lecture on Antique Alabama Furniture on Thursday, Aug. 29, from 4-6 p.m. at the Columbiana Public Library. The program is the highlight and conclusion of the adult summer program “Dig into the Past.”
“Lang will give a presentation using maps and giving information on the characteristics of antiques from this region,” said Director Dutcha Lawson. “He will have some actual pieces to show as part of his presentation. He said that if people would like to bring photos of antiques he would be glad to lend his expertise as to the time period, etc.”
Lang graduated from the College of Wooster, Wooster, Ohio, with a double major in history and art. He trained in furniture conservation at the Smithsonian Institution in Suitland, Md., as well as the Conservation Laboratory of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in Williamsburg, Va. At Williamsburg, he worked at the Anthony Hay Shop for several years as a cabinetmaker and historical interpreter. Lang was the Master Cabinetmaker at the Walker Allen Cabinet Shop at Alabama Constitution Village in Huntsville for 11 years where he provided historical interpretations and demonstrations of 19th century customs and crafts. He also served as the Curator of Collections and Exhibits of the Early Works Museum in Huntsville. Today, Lang specializes in the restoration and conservation of antique furniture and is also an expert in local historical furniture and early craftsmanship.
Lang will lecture on the migration of cabinetmakers and craftsmen from nearby states as well as Europe and Africa to Alabama before and during the antebellum period. The lecture will focus on specific cabinetmakers and groupings of furniture. Lang will give a slide presentation of signed pieces of Alabama furniture as well as describing the difference between high style and country made furniture. Using antique maps, estate inventories, photographs and paintings, Lang will demonstrate the traditions on cabinetmaking. He will also have tools, wood samples, and designs books on display.
At the conclusion of the lecture, Lang will discuss the proper care of antiques with an accompanying handout.