Guest Contribution by Pascal Panagiotidis
The use of Wood as one of the oldest organic materials reaches back in the prehistoric era. As time passed by, wood was transformed from a surviving tool into a valuable material ready to serve and express higher human needs. Wood has been present in various human activities whether we are talking about furniture design or art; it is used to express ideas leading to concepts with a unique aesthetic style. Irish designer Joseph Walsh is one of these artists whose work is an expression of forms and values. He has established a special relationship with wood following closely its life cycle, examining step by step the marks time leaves on it. As an organic material wood has the amazing ability to record time, a witness of all environmental changes.
EQUINOX // Walsh is exploring the nature’s cycles and its effects through time. He checks the way new formations emerge following nature’s rules before they get transformed into new material. Layers and rings are time measuring “tools” revealing a tree’s age. Nature cycles forms a path that changes with the seasons, a scenery that is repeated time after time till organic materials change shapes; this is a nature’s mechanism in an effort to maintain balance and ensure the evolution process. A cycle repeating itself, a time recording machine.
ENIGNUM // In this work Joseph Walsh’s approach is to give new forms to an existing material following nature’s example. Wood takes the shape of thin layers in an attempt to explore nature’s forms. Sculpturing the wood is a procedure that allows the designer to come closer to the material, to follow its story and find out its secrets. A gentle formation, a sensitive exploration that respects the material and also the way time and nature has shaped it over the years.
EROSION // It is quite remarkable the way Nature recycles the existing resources through the erosion process; Walsh tries to discover the patterns of this physical phenomenon. A constant material movement and transformation is taking place, a change from an old shape to a new one. Joseph Walsh investigates the relationship between the wood in its original shape and the final form of it; a designer’s inspiration acting as a natural force, a human erosion.