Wood Rustic 08

Jere Osgood

February 7, 1936 ~ October 10, 2023 (age 87) 87 Years Old

Jere Osgood Obituary

Jere Osgood, age 87, passed away peacefully on October 10, 2023 at Rivermead in Peterborough, NH. He was surrounded by the love of his family in the days prior. 

Jere was born, and raised, in Staten Island, New York, the son of Sidney and Margaret (Hill) Osgood. After high school he studied architecture at University of Illinois for two years, he transferred to the School of American Craftsmen program at Rochester Institute of Technology and graduated with a BFA in furniture design in 1960. He then went on to post graduate study in Denmark through the Scandinavian Seminar program.

Upon returning from Denmark Jere found success in selling small handmade wood items at America House in New York City. In search of more space to begin making larger furniture he established his first studio in Merryall-New Milford, CT. Here he gradually gained more clients interested in his furniture.

In addition to private commissions Jere was also a well-respected teacher of furniture design at schools such as; Philadelphia College of Art, Rochester Institute of Technology, and Rhode Island School of Design. He is well remembered as a founding instructor at Boston University’s Program in Artisanry. He was Associate Professor of Woodworking and Furniture Design from 1975 until 1985, in addition to Acting Director from 1985 until he left.

In the 1980’s Jere established a home and studio in Wilton, NH. After leaving teaching full time he dedicated himself more to commissions and gallery shows. He continued to teach short courses at many craft schools such as Peters Valley, Anderson Ranch, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, and Penland School of Crafts. His furniture is in many private and public collections such as The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The American Craft Museum, and The Renwick Gallery/Smithsonian American Art Museum. He was a recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts grants, a fellow of The American Craft Council, and a founding member of the New Hampshire Furniture Masters Association.

Jere moved to Rivermead in Peterborough, NH in 2017. He continued to do as much work as possible in their small workshop and enjoyed meeting new people there. The family wishes to thank all of the nurses and staff at Rivermead for the excellent care they gave Jere as his health declined.

Jere will be remembered as a woodworker, designer, artist, teacher, a master craftsman, and a major part of the studio furniture movement. To his family, he is also remembered as a father and grandfather who is loved and will be greatly missed.

Jere is survived by his two sons, Leif Osgood of Sherman, CT and Mark Osgood of Wilton, NH. He had five grandchildren from Mark; Ayla, Ari, Opal, Asa, and Olin of Connecticut, Vermont, and New Hampshire. He is also survived by his son’s spouses; Adria Reed Osgood of Wilton, NH and Rick Melara of Sherman, CT. He is predeceased by his former wife; Arlene Nilsson Osgood.

A private graveside service for family will be held on October 27, 2023. A public celebration of Jere’s life and work is planned for spring of 2024.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The Furniture Society’s Educational Grants Scholarship program.

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