Retirement gives woodcarver time to expand his craft

 

Woodcarver Sal Criscenzo stands with some of his latest works at his studio Sunday afternoon. The Amherstburg resident opened his own studio in the Kenilworth Plaza at 3395 Howard Ave. in Windsor.

Woodcarver Sal Criscenzo stands with some of his latest works at his studio Sunday afternoon. The Amherstburg resident opened his own studio in the Kenilworth Plaza at 3395 Howard Ave. in Windsor.

By Ron Giofu

 

Sal Criscenzo said he has always had a knack for carving wood.

Now in his retirement, that love for woodcarving has expanded to where he has his own storefront studio in Windsor.

Criscenzo, an Amherstburg resident for the last 35 years, said work and family were his priority for many years but the last few years, his art has become something he has been able to devote more of his energy towards.

“When I retired, I just concentrated and spent more time on my sculptures,” said Criscenzo. “Before, I didn’t have the time. Once I retired and had more time, I had to do something.”

Once he picks up a piece of wood, he said he lets the wood dictate what the sculpture will look like. He added that he has no theme that he bases his sculptures on, he sees what he wants to sculpt when he starts working with the wood.

“I need to take away the excess that doesn’t belong there,” he said. “Each piece of wood tells me the excess I’m supposed to chisel away.

Criscenzo opened his studio, simply entitled “Wood Sculptures by Salvatore Criscenzo,” just prior to Christmas. He believes his Windsor location is the right one as there is a good traffic flow and it is close to the Detroit border. It is located in the Kenilworth Plaza at 3395 Howard Ave., just north of Cabana Road. Amherstburg residents are making the trip to see his sculptures, he stated.

“The reactions of people, they say “wow, I can’t believe you can do this with wood,” said Criscenzo.

Criscenzo said he works with a friend to find the wood he wants. Each sculpture takes a different time frame to create as some take him four months and others up to 2 1/2 years.

“It all depends whatever subject comes up,” he said.

For more information, call him at 519-736-5981 or 519-996-7972 or visit www.artsbysal.com. His studio is open Friday-Sunday from 12-5 p.m.

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