Eleven benches, crafted by local and regional furniture artists, not only furnish the galleries but also provide an important link between the Museum and New England artists. The Museum has commissioned benches by Silas Kopf, Kristina Madsen, Dale Broholm, Hank Gilpin, Judy Kensley McKie, Rick Wrigley, Polly Cassel, Rosanne Somerson, Mark Del Guidice, Wendy Stayman, and Jason Berg.
The technical mastery of carving is immediately apparent in the furniture art of Kristina Madsen. In the mid-1980s, Madsen became fascinated by the surface textures and geometric patterns carved in traditional Polynesian, Melanesian, and Australian ethnographic objects and began to incorporate them into her own work. For this bench, she used elaborately carved dark and light woods to create a visually appealing contrast in colors.