The only true voyage of discovery, the only fountain of Eternal Youth, would be not to visit strange lands but to possess other eyes, to behold the universe through the eyes of another, of a hundred others, to behold the hundred universes that each of them beholds, that each of them is;
KNOWLEDGE - LABOTATORY - EXPERIMENT
The studio is an experimental laboratory and a library of knowledge about techniques for working with wood in which questions are asked about pushing the technical and aesthetic boundaries of this raw material. When working with wood composite, the most important thing is the sincerity in the use of this raw material and the willingness to break the standard approach. Traditional carpentry is treated as the beginning of an adventure to achieve a set goal. The techniques used are often not used for their original purpose, which leads to unusual functional, technical and structural solutions.
LOOKING AT TRADITION WITH A NEW EYE
Learning new carpentry techniques and the desire to look at them with fresh eyes leads to unobvious creative solutions. For example, the Kundekari technique, discovered in Turkey and originally used to make ornamented mosque doors, was used to make a mirror. A secular object for looking into one's own reflection. A multiplication of small mirrors, it does not allow one to look clearly at one's own image. It is a reflection of many images, at the same time a patchwork referring to the culture of Turkey. The reflections are non-obvious, subversive. In this way, the function of the mirror has been questioned.
NEW INSIGHTS/NEW CONTEXT
New interpretations are not always given to techniques, but to a function or product category. This was the case during a research trip to Seiffen in southern Saxony, where turned wood toys and decorations have been produced for 300 years. The angel candle holders, designed and made, are a challenge to the traditional Angel and Miner designs. The designed angels are imperfect, mocking, colourful. The Strangels angels are shown in the context of contemporary German culture. At the same time, they suggest that we are imperfect and that anyone can become an Angel and bring light into the home.
RESEARCH INTO CARPENTRY TECHNIQUES
One of the core activities at the studio is the study of wood and the search for innovative carpentry techniques. Trips to carpentry shops in different countries around the world lead to learning about unusual carpentry techniques and specific technical solutions. Trips to Japan, Germany , Turkey, Poland, Norway or Sweden have resulted in unique knowledge. The trip to Austria was driven by the desire to explore the innovative technique of bending wood using electricity on adjustable moulds. The limitations of this type of bending led to the development of a table with an unusual tubular leg design.
VARIABILITY IN THE WOOD - WOOD LIKE WATER
The water contained in the wood is one of the main motifs. Each log is like a river and a fibre is like a stream. The changeability of water, its elasticity, its life-giving and destructive power inspires me to search for it in wood, which is overflowing with it. Even when the wood is dried a minimal percentage of water is contained within it. Wood fibres literally resemble a river, but they do not overflow, they are frozen in a solid. They can be shaped with tools, or their elasticity and flexibility can be exploited by bending, flexing and stretching. In order to bring out the technical and aesthetic properties of wood, I travel the world and learn the techniques used by woodworkers in different countries. Japan's Yosegi Muku, Turkey's Kundekari, Australia's electric wood bending, Germany's toy decoration turning, England's turning and sandblasting. I translate the ways of working I have learnt into my artwork. For this reason, my workshop of techniques and projects is broad.
CIRCULAR THINKING ABOUT RESOURCES AND KNOWLEDGE
In the studio, I follow the doctrine created by James Lovelock and create objects with reference to the circular circulation of materials in nature. I treat the worlds of design, staged art, craft and materials as different ecosystems that intermingle and complement each other. This approach allows me to draw knowledge from the world of craft, design and art. I work with wood from local sawmills and FSC-certified wood. A collaboration with the Botanical Garden of the University of Warsaw provides me with wood from fallen or felled trees in the garden. I try to rely on the tacit knowledge of nature as well as therefore use the experience of previous generations to find better utilitarian solutions.