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Sheila Majumdar, Whisker Fatigue, 2020. Wax; 2 1/4 × 1 1/4 in.
Margaret Schäfer, Untitled (Crabs), c. 2014. Wood, paper, and crabs; 8 1/16 × 11 1/8 × 1 1/2 in.

14  Description

A well-intentioned yet poorly conceived wedding anniversary gift.

14b  Description

This is one of the special objects in my home, but its maker, Margaret Schäfer, is even more precious to me. Over the course of our friendship she has amazed me with her fearless artistic pursuits, of which crab boxes are just one example. The attentiveness, creativity, energy, and intelligence she brings to her objects also infuse her friendships. Years ago, she wrote to me about another crab box, describing the difficulty of making it in secret for her partner’s birthday (they live on a small island): “The oil I use to finish the wood takes at least a full day to dry, then it needs more layers, and it all takes longer than I expect.” Isn’t that the way creative projects go?


Sheila Majumdar is a Chicago-based artist, editor, and writer with an MA in art history and three years of experience on Jewelers Row. Working in the Publications department at the Art Institute of Chicago by day, she spends her free time daydreaming and realizing works in metal, words, and whatever else catches her imagination. Her rings are available through Etsy at IbisElement, and she takes on custom orders with relish.