This week I’ve been working with Charlie Whinney on a steam-bent sculpture. I do some steam-bending for making chairs and hayforks but Charlie takes it to a new level, working with large pieces of wood and bending them in new and creative ways. This sculpture is for a hotel in Washington, USA where it will hang from the ceiling of the lobby. Three of the pieces are designed to rotate so that the sculpture is constantly changing and, no matter how many times you pass by, it will always look different.
Charlie and I come from different areas of the woodworking world which is one of the reasons it’s so fun to work together. He uses sawn timber and power tools to make sculpture where I produce practical items from green logs using hand tools. Our common meeting point is a fascination with the potential of wood, a keen interest in design and the possibility of learning from each other. With traditional craft there is often little experimentation and new ideas come slowly. At Witherslack, ideas bounce back and forth constantly during the day and some of them might even bear fruit one day. It’s an exciting environment to work in and a great source of inspiration for us both.