George Benisek

George J Benisek

 

George grew up in Chicago Illinois where he discovered a profound love of nature at a very early age.  At only fifteen years old, he took a train to Yellowstone National Park where he worked for the next five summers for the fish and wildlife service at the fish hatchery.  He was able to discover the wonder and beauty of the Park during his free time.  George received his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan where he met his wife, Barbara.  After going to Medical School also at the University of Michigan, he was drafted by the US Army and served as a Captain in the medical corps for three years (and three months) in Germany.  His time spent in Germany further enhanced his love and appreciation for the beauty of the landscape and animals.  Upon his discharge from the Army, George returned to Michigan where he completed a radiology residency and then practiced as a Radiologist for more than 40 years.

 

Shortly before he retired, a fellow physician gave him a used lathe.  He had no formal training in the art of woodworking but found various instruction materials and began to create wooden bowls, vases and other decorative items.  On his 250 acres of mature forest in northern Michigan, George had access to an unlimited supply of spalted wood from various species of indigenous trees.  The spalting permitted George to create unique items with undulating patterns and a riot of coloring.  George carefully finishes each piece by hand, applying numerous coats of oil.  For years his creations were on sale at galleries in Frankfort, Michigan and here on Boca Grande.