Design Tasmania
Corner of Brisbane and Tamar streets
Launceston, 7250
+61 3 6331 5506

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Wood Collection

Casuarina Chairs

Marty Wolfhagen

Laminated Casuarina, Stainless Steel
780mm (h) x 450mm (w) x 450mm (d)

These fascinating chairs are made by seamlessly jointing more than 100 pieces of timber. Marty personally cut and milled the timber used for these chairs from a 25-year-old Casuarina grown by him on his family property on the East Coast. The chairs have been constructed using boat-building techniques with stainless steel wire in the seats. Marty’s design and craftsmanship results in an item of great sculptural quality.

"I milled the timber for the chairs down on the east coast. It took a lot of timber to make them; I wouldn’t recommend it actually! But that timber is usually used for firewood so it was good to make something out of it.

The design would have been suitable for steam bending with the right timber, but that’s very difficult to achieve without knowledge from the past. It’s an Industrial Revolution-type technology – they still do it in Poland, Finland, places like that; they have a lot of beech which they can make bent[wood] chairs from – but no one here does that sort of thing now; no one knows how.

The ability to make it without steam bending came from the timber, because of its nature. It’s got a flecked, close grain that was able to be glued up and not show it. There are over 100 pieces of wood in each chair.

It wasn’t a deliberate thing; I just wanted to make a particular chair, and I found out through trial and error – I adapted boatbuilding techniques mainly 0 how to achieve the sculptural form but avoid the technical aspect [of steam-bending]. So it’s a chair with a bit of boat in it."