Ves-el wins a Wood Award
We are proud winners of a 2015 Wood Award presented at the Carpenter’s Hall in London last night by Tom Dyckhoff. Ves-el, joint winner of the Bespoke Category, was designed by Gareth Neal in collaboration with Zaha Hadid and made in our workshops as part of our Wish List Project with the American Hardwood Export Council.
Award winning architect Hadid had always wanted tableware made from wood. Interested in the idiosyncrasies of traditional processes and how these could be simulated through digital imitation, Gareth chose to play with the form of a carafe or water carrier and turn it into something more sculptural using advanced computer modelling software and our 5 axis CNC machine as an extension of the craftsman’s hands. The making was certainly a challenge. We had to adapt and upgrade our CNC equipment and the design required extensive programming by our CNC expert and craftsman, Colin White. It took 2 days alone for each vessel and the volume of code from the CAM system meant that the upload time accounted for nearly as much time as the making. The vessels were then hand finished and sanded.
The judges felt Ves-el to be a worthy winner because of the combination of the process and the finished result which, they said, had an intensity of energy.
The bespoke category prize was shared with Endgrain by Raw-Edges Design Studio which showcases the possibilities provided by dyeing wood instead of painting it. Staining the wood all the way through leaves it consistently saturated, so that when Endgrain gets dirty of fades in the sun, removing or sanding the top.
The winner of winners was The Fishing Hut by Niall McLaughlin Architects, taking away the coveted Arnold Laver Gold Award – as well as being top in the awards’ Private category. Other champions included the Constellations bar by Howard Miller Design in Liverpool (Commercial & Leisure category); the Observatory, Study and Workshop by Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios (Small Projects); and the Canary Wharf Crossrail station by Foster & Partners in London (Structural).