I am continuing to explore the question “can a birchbark piece be sophisticated?” This table exploits the beauty of bark that has the feel of top-grain leather. However, the design and the top are very modern.
An angular base showcases both sides of what birch bark can look like. The dowels securing the base are covered in dyed rawhide. With a sandblasted glass top thick enough to withstand hot drinks, this piece takes an age-old natural material and brings it into the 21st century. The top detaches for easier transport.
The natural rawhide and bark juxtapose with the glass top.
We believe our pieces can function at an art level because they address issues, explore concepts and express thoughts.
They are unique, one-of-a-kind and personal. We try to blur the line between utility and art.
We would be happy to talk with you about creating anything! We both enjoy the challenge and reward of translating your interests and lifestyle into a commissioned piece that reflects you.
“…a greater contingent of homegrown designers both established and emerging is not only finding success in Canada, but forging a national aesthetic based on attention to materials, robust lines, cheeky humour and a marked eco-consciousness.”
-Danny Sinopoli, The Globe and Mail
“…individuality and singularity implies rarity, which breeds desire”
The design of this solid white oak chess table was inspired by Omar Khayyam’s The Rubaiyat. From this poem, two sides of the table edge are engraved in fold with the lines:
’tis all a chequer-board of nights and days where destiny with men for pieces plays:
hither and thither moves, and mates and slays, and one by one back in the closet lays.
Each of the four openwork pillars contains a branch that is double gold-leafed. The sides are lightened by catenary arches distinctive of Moghul architecture and refer back to the shape of the pillars. To complete the vignette are two stools that tuck under the table when not in use. The stools can also be used as side tables, but are sturdy enough to stand upon and declare your victory!
This is an excellent example of Handcrafted studio wooden furniture made by INAKA. This unique handmade wooden chess table with its matching pieces would be an outstanding highlight in any room and an asset to any home. High quality custom designed handmade wood furniture is a reflection of the owner as well as of the artist.
stools: 36cm x 36cm x 46cm H; 14” x 14” x 18”H
The tree this piece came from was destined to be destroyed to widen an existing road. I heard about it and went to look at it.
Manitoba bur oak is an extremely dense wood, especially heavy when still green. We cut a 1.2 meter (4 foot) length from its trunk, but Reg and I could not even lever it onto the trailer. We had to go and find someone with a front end loader to lift it into the trailer so we could transport it to my sawyer to be cut.
At home, I did some calculations and determined the piece weighed over 272 kg (600 pounds)! I am happy to report that the table, although still quite heavy, can now be taken apart and moved by one person.
This is an excellent example of handcrafted furniture made by INAKA. This unique contemporary handmade wood table would be an asset to any home. High quality custom designed handmade wood furniture is a reflection of the owner as well as of the artist.
91.5cm L x 50cm W x 40cm H
36”L x 20”W x 16”H
This table explores the medium of birch bark. I harvest the bark myself from trees already logged. The care with which it must be acquired and processed makes it as valuable as full-grain leather. I used almost 3 square meters (30 sq.ft.) in this piece.
Birch bark is a material that has been used by people on several continents since prehistoric times.
A form able to exploit the possibilities of the bark led to the simple drum shape. “Drum” is an architectural term referring to one of the cylindrical building blocks of a column. The six 3-D tessellations give the optical illusion of building blocks. Almost 400 birch bark parallelograms were formed into hexagons which appear as cubes to achieve the effect. Dyed birch bark makes up the background and top of the table with the bark tessellations left their natural color.
The table would be stunning in an entry or as a display table for another piece of artwork. Or stack books on it in a library. As with most of my pieces, they are flexible in their functions.
This is an excellent example of handcrafted studio wooden furniture made by INAKA. This unique contemporary handmade wooden table would be an asset to any home. High quality custom designed handmade wood furniture is a reflection of the owner as well as of the artist.
61cm diameter x 76cm H
24”diameter x 30”H
I named this table after Pierre Gaultier de Varennes, sieur de La Vérendrye, a Canadian explorer who ventured farther west than any previous European explorer had. He traveled to Winnipeg and then southwest, along the trails where I found this tree. He was searching for a route across Canada from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. He didn’t find it, but I like to think that perhaps he stopped and camped near this oak, tying his food to it and starting the bend that resulted in the U-shaped trunk.
Pierre would have traveled here with his two sons in 1738. I cut down this tree in 2004 when it was going to be removed to widen a road. I counted 284 rings on the trunk, so I like to think that Pierre had touched it, along with all his dreams.
This is an excellent example of handmade studio wooden furniture made by INAKA. This unique contemporary handcrafted wood table would be an asset to any home. High quality custom designed handmade wood furniture is a reflection of the owner as well as of the artist.
91.5cm L x 91.5cm W x 30cm H
36”L x 36”W x 12”H
The wood for this table came from a family who homesteaded in Manitoba in the mid 1880’s. They planted several maples around the turn of the 20th century in hopes of realizing sugar production from them. When the family started to specialize in crop production, the trees were forgotten until a subsequent buyer wanted to clear more land, and started bulldozing them down and burning them. This is all that is left of that stand.
A free form glass top I designed finishes the piece. I’m sure I’ll never find a piece with such exquisite grain ever again. The table could be used as a hall, entry or sofa table. It is a knock-down design for ease in shipping.
This is an outstanding example of handcrafted wooden furniture made from reclaimed wood by INAKA. This unique contemporary handcrafted studio wood table with glass top would be a highly desirable asset to any home. High quality custom designed handmade wood furniture is a reflection of the owner as well as of the artist.
132cm L x 58cm D x 84cm H
52”L x 23”D x 33”H