Gordon Merrick Bio
As a young man in the 1970's, Gordon Merrick journeyed to Maine in search of a new path for his life. In the pristine wilderness, Gordon discovered his love for carpentry and woodworking. While an industrial arts student, he was introduced to Margaret Seeler. Seeler, a master artisan and author of The Art of Enameling, mentored Gordon in design and form. During the span of their two decade long relationship, Seeler guided Gordon towards Taoist philosophy and to seek out his own patterns in wood design.
Today, Gordon Merrick is a highly respected, self-taught, woodworking craftsman. He is much sought after to design exclusive, distinct woodworking in media environments by some of the most influential names in the recording industry. Many of his pieces have been featured in trade and architectural digests and Gordon has been published often, writing about his unique veneering techniques.
Intertwined with this journey, has been Gordon's love of music. A lifelong Deadhead, Gordon was inspired by a concert experience to create a wood mandala with a radiant series of reproductive imagery focused around the "Steal Your Face" icon. While many others may have left such an image drift into the recesses of their memories, Gordon went home and spent six months creating his vision. When it was completed, with the Steal your Face having been inlayed by hand, it was sent to the Grateful Dead. The band members were amazed and Gordon and the mandala became firmly ensconced within the Grateful Dead family. The mandala was hung backstage at the Chinese New Year's Shows in 1985 and then found a home at Club Front, the recording studio for the Grateful Dead's last three albums.
The deep appreciation shown for the first mandala infused Gordon with creative energy. He presented personally a mandala to Jerry Garcia, inlayed with the famous Stanley Mouse "Cats under the Stars" design at the 1986 Grateful Dead New Year's Eve show. Another mandala was given to Dan Healy, the longtime Dead sound wizard. His featured a redwood burl design with a white inlay and black rose. Phil Lesh and John Popper of Blues Traveller were also recipients of custom pieces. Gordon has continued to create mandalas over the last twenty years for his close friends and family.
Each mandala begins with choosing the burl, the wood cut from a tree burl or outgrowth used in veneering. The types of woods used are ash, redwood, camphor, rosewood, walnut, myrtlewood, and amboyna wood, a rare and beautifully ornate wood from the East Indies. The pattern is chosen and the wood is thinly sliced in order for each piece to be a match in the pattern. Each section of veneer is then assembled together to create the mandala. To arrange the pieces of wood for veneering is an art form in itself, called “matching”. By focusing on every fine detail, Gordon achieves true symmetry, which invokes the meditative impulse of each mandala.
Gordon has also done several artworks for famous musical artists and CEO's including:
Maria Carey - A four year contract ,Gordon worked with Maria creating her house and also her recording studio.
Tommy Matola (CEO for Sony Music)- Gordon constructed parts of Tommy's home and six major sony recording studios in NYC.
Paul Allen- (Bill gates right hand man) Gordon completed recording studios in his home and also several in hollywood.
Shania Twain- completed a home recording studio
Glen Fry (eagles band member) - Created a commercial recording studio in hollywood for him.
Tom Buckner (world famous opera singer)- home mixing studio created
Giel Liberty (originator of Circe De Soleil)- created a home theater for him .
The rollover image is before the inlay on the original peice of art given to the Grateful Dead.