Canadian Woodworking

Chairisma: Seating in Western Maple

Author: Rob Brown
Photos: Ken Guenter
Published: February March 2017
Melanie Rush
Melanie Rush

Camosun College, on Vancouver Island, recently put on an exhibition of chairs made by students. Influenced by everything from modern masters to historical icons, these chairs mix materials, styles and approaches to furniture design.

Melanie Rush
A Curved Connection Western Maple “I wanted the experience of creating and joining curves so I designed a lounge chair that was predominately composed of curves.”

Melanie Rush

Elaine Waring
Geometric Womb Chair Western Maple, Walnut “The overall shape of this chair was inspired by the “Womb Chair” designed by Eero Saarinen in 1948. The geometric panels were all assembled without the use of clamps.”

Elaine Waring

Natalia Guzmán-Silva
Silla #1 (uno) Western Maple, Black Walnut “Inspired by the chaise longue, this chair is composed of 346 pieces glued together, shaped and sanded to a smooth surface. The legs can be removed and folded for easy shipping.”

Natalia Guzmán-Silva

Ian Walsh
A very small, brightly coloured American bird that has wings that beat very fast. Western Maple, African Mahogany. “This bench is made of three separate torsion box constructions. The seat is made to detach for transport purposes.”

Ian Walsh

Douglas Dokis
100 L.L. Western Maple “The influences for this chair design were Italian designer Carlo Molino and American chair maker Sam Maloof. I aimed to combine their styles to create a chair that has a late ’60s sports-car look.”

Douglas Dokis

Ruth A. Spohn
Whiskey or Wine Western Maple, Walnut veneer, Leather “While designing my chair, I was inspired by both traditional styles and the secondary lines found in Sam Maloof’s chairs.”

Ruth A. Spohn

Emily K. Ibsen
Stormy Maple Western Maple “This chair was inspired by Sam Maloof’s rocking chair, the Arts & Crafts elongated box joint, Muskokan summers and Fibonacci’s golden ratio. I incorporated Maloof’s joinery and contrasting plug details with Phi (Ø) proportions and Fibonacci numbers while allowing the Western Maple’s intricate figure, chatoiancy, knots and live edge to speak for itself.”

Emily K. Ibsen

Brennan Wierzba
Gnome Chair Western Maple, Garry Oak “I made this chair with aspirations of simplicity and honesty. I drew inspiration from the peasant-built rustic Windsor chairs of old Europe, while also trying to refine and experiment.”

Brennan Wierzba

Craig McWilliam
Bjørn Lænestol Western Maple, Hemp upholstery “This chair was designed in the Mid-century Modern style. The name, which translates to “Bear Armchair” is an homage to the Danish influence behind the design.”

Craig McWilliam

Yoshi Konomoto
Windsor Torii Western Maple “This design originated from a 19th century English Windsor chair. I used straight lines and sharp corners to express the Windsor chair form without its characteristic turning and bending. The back of the chair resembles a Torii gate.”

Yoshi Konomoto

Angus deBoth
The Barra Chair Western Maple, Harris Tweed® “This chair was heavily influenced by Danish design aesthetics and the principles of balance and simplicity.”

Angus deBoth

Rob Brown - [email protected]

Rob is a studio furniture maker and the editor at Canadian Woodworking & Home Improvement.

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