art Archives | West Wind Hardwood
Tony Grove – A Boatbuilder’s Perspective

Tony Grove – A Boatbuilder’s Perspective

Silva Bay Shipyard School – July 2016 – Photo by Jan Nielsen
Not so open any longer; the school has closed its doors and is the home to local businesses.

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A True Renaissance Man

After completing a four-year boatbuilding apprenticeship that started in 1980, Tony Grove honed his skills as a shipwright, specializing in wooden boat restoration/construction, boat interiors building and custom furniture design. This led him to instructing at the Silva Bay Shipyard School on Gabriola Island BC. Tony taught traditional Boatbuilding plus a course (the first of its kind) that he designed on Ship Cabinetry/Joinery. Tony eventually became the school’s head instructor; leaving the school in 2005 to spend time with his family, working for himself as a custom woodworker, boatbuilder, artist, writer and teacher. A true renaissance man!

With the Silva Bay Shipyard School closed, the circle has come full round with The Grove Woodworking School  tucked amongst the trees on beautiful Gabriola Island, B.C.  Courses and Workshops focus on woodworking skills and techniques for the marine environmentwith all skills being transferable to general woodworking. A few non-marine programs will be offered as well. Course material is designed principally for novices; those for advanced learners will be noted.

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Paul Harder Bronze Works (and a Little Bit of Wood Too)

Paul Harder Bronze Works (and a Little Bit of Wood Too)

Paul Harder is a bronze sculptor with a charming countryside studio located in Deep Cove. Paul has a passion for creating west coast wildlife and marine creatures.

One of his specialties is the design and fabrication of custom-made coffee and dining room tables that incorporate bronze, glass and wood.  Working with Jan and West Wind Hardwood the most recent example of one of Paul`s creations is the Octopus Burl Table shown here.  This table started with an old burl collected by the client several years ago. Jan and his team restored and milled the burl and Paul created the supporting structure using three giant bronze octopus tentacles. The table has a glass inset with a smaller feature octopus suspended from the underside of the table. This is a one of kind piece and definitely a conversation starter that now lives on Piers Island.

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Vol.62 Customer Projects

Vol.62 Customer Projects

Jim Barker’s work seen first hand in the Hilton Village, Honolulu Hawaii

Our collaboration on this job with Jim Barker of Barker Manufacturing Inc. – Textured Millwork – Weathered – Burnt – Adze  (Victoria, BC) began in January 2015.  Destined for Honolulu – Hilton Village – Lagoon Tower, the delivery of this order became a bureaucratic struggle.  Afrormosia – Pericopsis elata – Fabaceae (Leguminosae); sometimes called African Teak is under the radar of CITES – Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.  To ensure the legality of harvesting practices, this means documentation must be produced every time the ‘wood’ crosses an international border.

It was a bit of a hunt to locate Jim’s handiwork but succeed we did.  We spoke to the Sales Staff and they said they are wowed by the beauty of these pieces of furniture.  It’s always satisfying to see ‘the art of wood’ well appreciated!!

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Copper Sinks in Santa Clara Del Cobre, Michoacán

Copper Sinks in Santa Clara Del Cobre, Michoacán

Wood…..Copper.  Copper…..Wood.   Not much in common with the exception that both are natural resources; both allow much expression of design and beauty; both call to Jan and Shelley.

This past March knowing that we were returning to the town of Pátzcuaro after 5-years, we came with measurements and a plan to return to the Village of Santa Clara Del Cobre.  The arts and crafts skills in the villages around Lake Pátzcuaro and elsewhere in Michoacán have been passed down to this day, becoming more finely honed with each successive generation, producing craftsmen who are among the finest in the country.

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