You probably have seen old redwood fences in your neighborhood - gray, moldy and cracked. After 30 or 40 years, they often get thrown out. Not many people realize that there is so much beauty inside this old redwood. As a sculptor and wood artist, my goal is to discover the beauty and spirit of the old wood and bring it back to life through contemporary sculptures and wall art. Redwood is mostly thought of as a material to make rustic outdoor sculptures and furniture, but rarely seen as a material for refined, elegant or graceful sculptures. I enjoy the challenge of using a rustic material and transform it into fine art and sculptures. Here is an image of an old fence and reclaimed redwood after it got scrubbed and cleaned.
Each piece of wood is unique. I start with observing "what wants to emerge". Sometimes I can see it from the outside, but often iI have to look inside and start carving to see the color, flow of the grain and texture of the wood. Since the dimensions of a single wood board are fixed (5 feet by 8 inches by 3/4 inch), I often laminate several boards to be able to create larger sculptures. When I start carving, I let the wood guide me, exploring and setting free the inside. After lots of carving and even more sanding, I usually apply several coats of oil to bring out the beautiful color and grain of the wood. Here are a few of my sculptures and wall art pieces I created using reclaimed redwood fence boards:
When people see and touch the finished sculptures, they tell me that the warmth and softness of the wood and the elegance and flow of the piece makes it hard to believe that the wood came from an old fence. The beauty is always on the inside, you just have to look for it.