My name is Dan Nguyen, but I go by Nuge. That nickname has evolved from the mispronunciation of my last name, Nguyen.

I create in the woodshop because I express myself the best by working with my hands. I have never been great at articulating my thoughts into words so producing artwork that is expressive of emotions felt natural to me.

I was drawn to art and woodworking because it offered me the freedom that I didn’t have in architecture. I felt like I was strapped down to a computer drawing construction documents and rearranging condo layouts. In architecture school, I was taught to be as wild and imaginative as possible; I was practically designing pig farms in the sky. I had this energy flowing through my veins and constantly wanted to push myself out of my creative comfort zone.

Being fully immersed in my art has revived this energy in me. I now have this creative license that allows me to produce whatever my heart desires. I am not a great illustrator and wouldn’t know what to draw if you told me to produce an image. But creating sensuality felt natural because it’s expressive of feelings. Seeing people connect to my work on an emotional level is one of the greatest compliments I could ever receive as an artist.

I pride myself on handcrafting all of my pieces. Working with my hands gives me a comprehensive understanding of my work that I would not be able to understand had I been creating it through a computer screen. It’s only through working and revisiting my work day after day that I am able to fully understand not only how each piece looks, but how they feel and what parts need to be massaged further. This rigorous practice ensures that each piece has a voice of its own.

I hope you enjoy my work as much as I enjoy making it.

-Nuge <3