Again, a long time between postings, sorry but not much good at this website stuff, would rather be in the workshop or fishing.
Been a busy time since I last wrote from the Wood Festival in Breville, France so haven’t even had much time for fishing although I did get out last week and we were pulling in fish as fast as our lines hit the water, not often it’s that good, I guess that’s why they call it fishing and not catching eh!!!
The Breville Wood Festival was fantastic, 3 days of a multitude of woodcrafts and arts, fabulous local organic foods and beverages and music. The woodturning competition was a lot of fun, a big thanks to all the turners who took part with much cameraderie and laughter, even though I suspect they were probably laughing at my pathetic attempts to speak French!!
Luckily Michel Auriou from Auriou Rasps was there to help me translate, thanks Michel. A big thanks again to to Martin Gschwandtner from Magma Tools in Austria and Raymond Bordet in France for supplying the magnificent Titan lathe and all the tools I needed but couldn’t fit in the overhead on the plane. And the biggest thanks to all the fabulous folks in the Breville community and their sponsors for all the hard work and support in putting an event like this together and hosting us all so wonderfully.
And much to my surprise the judges awarded my piece,‘Extravagant Balance’, 1st place in the competition. All the finished pieces were equally worthy and I sure would have found it hard to judge.
And it is all happenging again this year but with a very different format. As it will be the 10th anniversary of the festival the organisers are inviting back all the competitors from the last 10 events but there will not be any competition, it will be a collaborative gathering where we will all spend 3 days playing together and ‘just making stuff’
Also this year the Breville Festival is partnering with AFTAB the French Association for Artistic Woodturning which will be organising their annual Congress in association with the Festival. AFTAB will be running 3 day hands on classes in Breville leading up to the festival and then running their Congress alongside the festival with demonstrations from leading International and French woodturners who will also be playing at the collaborative gathering between demonstrations, there will be all the other usual festival activities going on as well and promises to be a lot of fun so if you can make it to Breville, near Cognac, late August I’d definitely recommend a visit, for exact dates and details go to
After France I enjoyed a nice visit to Israel, many thanks to Daniel Serota for organising my demo there and providing use of his workshop/school and to all those who came along. Big thanks also to Pablo Nemzoff and family for the wonderful hospitality and to Eli & Liba & Shakar for a fabulous day in the Upper Gallilea, I hope it’s not so long till I see you all again
I returned home ready to some serious time in the workshop which was just as well as we’ve had the worst summer in NZ I can ever remember, way too cool and wet, that Spanish geezer El Nino is to blame apparentlyL But at least I wasn’t too upset being in the workshop and not at the beach!
Not much action on the property selling / workshop moving front till this week when an offer on the property came in and fingers crossed it will all progress smoothly and I am really looking forward to setting up a new workshop in Whangarei.
Got another busy travel year ahead, I’m sitting on a plane right now heading to Rarotonga for my daughters wedding:) Just about to land so gotta turn off for now.
Work travel starts late March when I head across the ditch for Turnfest, another 10yr anniversary with demonstrators from all previous events coming back, check out www.turnfest.com.au After turnfest I’ll be visiting furniture designer Ross Annels in Cooroy, Nth of Brisbane and giving a presentation about the CollaboratioNZ conferences that we have been holding in Northland with the hope it will convince the local council to get behind Ross in organising a similar event in Cooroy, It is amazing how the ripples have gone out after the first Emma Lake Collaboration in Nth Saskatchewan in 1996. Sadly I missed the Bowral Collab in NSW, Australia while I was in Israel but have heard from Mark Sfirri that it was a fabulous event.
In October I’ll be going to the Western Australian Collab, it’s been a long time since I’ve been to WA and I’m really looking forward to catching up with lots of friends there, sadly one of my favourite WA woodturners Gordon Ward passed away last year and I know we will all miss Gordon and his pun-ishing wit but I am sure he will be there with us in spirit
After Cooroy I’ll be heading back to Brisbane to do a weekemnd class in furnitue designer Richard Vaughan’s ‘shedudio’ focusing on design, carving and surface treatments.
Then it’s back home for a week or three to repack the bags before I head to Nth Amarica in early May, doing a bunch of demo in the Bay Area of San Francisco then heading to Provo, Utah for Craft Supplies ‘Super Wednesday’ and the Utah Symposium, I haven’t been to this event since the move from BYU so looking forward it. I’ll also be attending the AAW Symposium in San Jose where I’ll be having some input to a panel discussion on effective teaching and demonstrating and helping out on the Magma trtade stand. Then I’ll be doing some demos/classes in Washington State, Oregan and Vancouver Is and ending my trip in Nth Saskatchewan at Emma Lake.
Then home for 3 weeks to recharge and repack before heading to France for the Breville Wood Festival/AFTAB Congress, Austria for the the Magma ‘Open Doors’ and then the West Australia Collaboration.
I am still managing to get a few pieces made and here’s a few pics of some latest work…….
‘Point Break’ – collection of Steve Smith and Ruth – Melbourne, Australia.
‘Waka iti’ – Collection of Mac and Carol Ray – Maine
‘Buddha Boat’ 2011. Maple, Acrylic Paint. Collaboration with Binh Pho. Collection of Dave Forney – Chicago, USA
Bye for now:)