In our last blog, we took a look at one of the coolest kinds of custom furniture you don’t want to miss: the lamp. Well here are some more awesome lighting creations by furniture makers Mario Messina and Dave Hurwitz.
Lamp Maker Extraordinaire: Mario Messina
Messina draws his design inspiration from nature. Each of the following lamps features organic curves, delicate features, and takes its design from something in the world.
Dehiscent Pod Pendant Lamp
This sculptural lamp was inspired by various seed pod found in nature. Bursting open with light, this lamp creates a warm and inviting ambiance in any room.
Each lamp in this series is designed for the room it’s made for, to fit in with an entire theme, and to light it perfectly.
As Messina explains: “Cephalopod is inspired by the beautiful spiral form of an Ammonite fossil that I’ve used as the point of origin, the foundational core on which to build a laminated spiral armature of bent wood to which I apply layers of hand made paper with archival glue.
The outer spiral frame is a golden spiral or Fibonacci spiral that I form using tapered laminations of wood and a unique bending technique that I developed that allows me to form graceful and delicate curves and spirals that are not possible by conventional clamps and forms.
Over this spiral I lash heat bent wooden ribs that progressively grow in volume to form the skeletal structure for the paper shell. The tentacles that form the base demonstrate this technique as well and give the piece an animated presence.”
Messina’s uses materials including hickory, ammonite fossil, paper, waxed nylon cord, and brass lamp parts to bring this creation to life. His techniques are also impressive: free-form tapered lamination, heat bending, and paper lamination. Who knew so much went into creating a lamp?!
Each Cairn Lamp is a one of a kind sculptural composition of beach or river stones that form the base and hub from which the bent wood armature is joined. The organic shape of these lamps is evocative of a sense of place, shelter, and warmth.
The bent wood frames are either steam-bent, or tapered laminations on some of the more elaborate lamps and covered with a variety of handmade papers from Asia. The wood frame is lashed with waxed sail twine and the free edges of the paper are reinforced with sail twine as well. The solid brass light socket is a pull chain type.
Each lamp is signed, numbered, and dated and totally unique as there are many rock colors and compositions as well as types of handmade paper.
Yellow Table Lamp in Carved and Painted Poplar
This hand carved piece, which bears the waves that have become a signature of Hurwitz’s, was painted in a yellow, all-natural milkpaint finish. The shade is also handmade, with flecks of grass put into the paper to texturize the piece and soften the lighting further.
This design can be made with a larger shade, can be made in custom size, and can even be a floor lamp. It’s amazing what can be done by a fine artisan.
Even better, the pictuerd piece is currently available!
Carved Cherry and Stained Glass Floor Lamp
This award-winning floor lamp was a collaboration of Hurwitz’s with stained glass artist Phil Godenschwager of Atlantic Art Glass and Design, and LED lighting engineer Jason Orzell of LEDdynamics. All of them are located in the small town of Randolph, Vermont.
This floor lamp features Hurwitz’s hand-carved, wavy feel, which is further accentuated by the organic look of the green-stained glass, which bears a resemblance to plant cells under a microscope. The glass is then illuminated by three LED lights and the front of the piece by a fourth.
When artists collaborate amazing things can happen, and in this case, the floor lamp won a first place award in the 2010 Vermont Fine Furniture and Wood Products Design Competition and it’s no wonder why!
Among the large variety of furniture our woodworkers create, the lamps are some of the most stylish, artistic, elegant and fun!