BIO for L.D. Burke III
By Ma Tex (L.D.'s Mother)

      My loving son L.D. has been an interesting person ever since he got thrown by old White Eye when he was four.  The only thing that saved him was his hard head and that's where he landed.  I tried sending him to schools back East but that didn't work out either.  In college he majored in Forestry and Skiing, then Psychology and Skiing, and finally Fine Arts and Skiing.  He graduated (after six years) from Colby College in Maine.  I think his degrees were for Outdoors and Fine Arts.

       Well, L.D. took his next degree in Traveling and Ski-Bumming.  After this year he started his ROTC hitch in the U.S. Air Force.  They were glad to give him an early out short of three years as a radar controller in Germany.  This was between wars so no real damage was done...'cept that he married a beautiful innocent Dutch girl and brought her back with him.  

     The moment he returned to the states, L.D. headed West.  He ended up in San Francisco to start his career.  The first year there he was encouraged to leave three different jobs.  First, he posed as an Advertising Manager, then as a Copy Writer and finally as a Designer.  The second year, L.D. decided he best be his own boss.  He opened a design office.  Within three short years the quality of my son's work became apparent so clients started dwindling.  L.D. dropped out again.

       After nearly a year of traveling and ski bumming, L.D. settled in Chicago.  This time he got off on the right foot.  He had some experience and Chicago was a big, tolerant market.  L.D. did a lot better than I expected.  After seven years (never being comfortable with success) L.D. dropped out again.

       He and his family (two girls by now) moved up to a farm he owned on Washington Island (a island in Lake Michigan off Northern Wisconsin).  There, L.D. and his wife raised Christmas Trees, Heinz 57 horses and a few thin beef cows.  L.D. had always wanted to be a cowboy so he calls these his "ranchin days".  He never recovered.

     Three years passed, the money played out,  so L.D.  and his family returned to the Chicago area.  The design scene there had also played out so L.D. decided to try the building business.  He'd done some carpentry on the island so figured he'd enter the Spec Home market.  In 1979 he reached another interesting plateau.  The real estate market collapsed.  L.D. had a serious meltdown.  Just before the bank and the sheriff closed in, my son packed his carpet bag and slipped down to Houston, Texas.  If you hadn't noticed, L.D. is a mover.

 In four years as a graphics, interior, and furniture designer, L.D. was able to send his two daughters off to school (his wife had already split), then catch the last train out of Houston (the oil crunch was just coming down).  At this point I began to notice a disturbing pattern to L.D.'s life.

         Well, finally my son got his big break.  He landed in Santa Fe where "weirdness" is normal and it's not only ok, but almost necessary to wer several hats at one time.  After a year of  playing around in the "New Age" and doing watercolors and sculpture, my son's Houston earnings ran out.  L.D. figured since he'd designed furniture he could probably make it too.  His luck was running.  He started making New Mexico style furniture (very, very simple).  Then one bright day he made his first piece of cowboy furniture (a mirror).  That was 1983.  Incidentally, this was about three years before anybody outside of Cody, Wyoming had ever heard of Molesworth (L.D. included).  

       When the big Cowboy and Western revival came on stream, L.D. was there. "Ain't nothin like timing and luck for success."

       During his Santa Fe career, L.D. has designed mirrors for Presidents, Trasteros for movie stars, buildings for himself and clothes for beautiful women.  It's just dumb luck that L.D. gets away with doing so many different things.  Maybe it's cause he never learned the word "no".

Yours truly,
Ma Tex

       Editors Note:  L.D. has received over 180 regional, national, and international awards for design.  He won the "Most Original Design" award at the first Western Design Conference.  He is still an avid skier, wind surfer, hiker, and horseman.  And he still lives in Santa Fe.

       P.S.  This year L.D. became listed in the International Biographic Center's 2000 Outstanding Artists and Designers of the 20th Century.


    


These here are 

L.D.'s ORIGINAL COWBOY SAYINGS:
(which means these are what you get to choose from when you want somethin' special to be 'inscripted' on any custom piece you order from him...less'n ya got yer own original saying!)
                                                                                                                                     - Ma Tex




 


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