My Grandfather’s Bench
For as long as man has understood tools, wood has been intrinsically linked to our evolution. From a simple club, to fire, to the wheel and hence to some of the most enduring of engineering and artistic artifacts created in history. I sometimes wonder which millenia we would have been stuck in without it.
Today, many materials are offered as alternatives. The obvious of course are the many and varied metals, which have provided engineering solutions well beyond the scope of wood. Plastics have also provided a range of manufacturing possibilities that wood could never provide. In a broader, manufacturing sense, do we really need wood anymore? Whether we do or not is a pointless debate for need is irrelevant when it comes to affairs of the heart. Wood is beautiful, it is natural, it is warmth and nourishment to the soul. In a world where technology and alternative materials provide everything we need to build a home, almost every designer throughout modern materials history has introduced wood somewhere. Today, in the modern context of architecture, wood is still used liberally and with great affection; I find it hard to perceive of a time where it will no longer be wanted.
I have spent many years designing and making wooden cabinetry, furniture, toys, landscape architecture and other things for my garage and for our clients. Though now, I have handed the construction over to far more talented craftsmen than myself and in so doing, I have freed myself to focus on design.
My latest (and most likely last piece I will construct) is what I affectionately refer to as My Grandfather’s Bench. It has the proportions of my grandfather’s workbench tucked away in his old garage and overhangs from the other bench that once sat in his potting shed. I have ended up with a hybrid design that blends the various utilitarian shed practices with the practicality of a dining table. Tall, powerful and thoroughly useable in any vernacular.
This version at 4 metres long seats 14 people on high stools, quite comfortably. We have enjoyed many functions in our studio along this table and it is now starting to show the story of those times in its evolving patina. I love this table. I love its evolving history and I love the fact that it evokes memories of my grandfather and his strong hands.
Now, we will create tables for you. To embed your own stories and pass down to your grandchildren. Please call to discuss pricing.