Week 4


Sam Bradley

Friday, December 2, 2011

Hello again, this is Sam Bradley with more news from the National School of Furniture via Rycotewood Furniture Centre at Oxford & Cherwell Valley College (OCVC).

Since 2010, Rycotewood has taken on three craftsmen-in-residence: Ian Smith, Tom Cope, and Jered Allcock, who were all involved with World Skills from 5-8 October. Ian went on to make the trophies for this year’s Oxfordshire Restaurant Awards, and Rycotewood is now the official trophy supplier to the Awards.

Rycotewood has also run a variety of interesting courses, including an enlightening free composites introduction day with Paul Hamlin at OCVC"s Bicester Campus earlier this month.


All levels within the National School of Furniture at Rycotewood visited the Power of Making and Postmodernism exhibitions at the V&A on 9 November. I found the Power of Making exhibition by the Crafts Council most interesting as it featured so much to inspire the artisan in me. I particularly enjoyed seeing the Cabana cabinet by Fernando and Humberto Campana that can be best described as a grass hut wardrobe.


And on 21 November, I joined my fellow students to meet at Deep in Wood for the Sylva OneOak Project run by Gabriel Hemery. Here we met makers, Philip Koomen, Derek Elliot, Robert Ingham, Philip Clayden, Simon Clements, Martin Damen, Terry Hardaker, and the Pathway Workshop, and collected five boards donated from the OneOak Tree’s timber.


On our course, we have been designing with OneOak timber in mind for a competition at OCVC which will be judged by Philip Kooman, Simon Fineman of Timbmet, and others. An innovative project, the chosen design will be made into fine furniture and displayed in the OneOak Story Pavillion at Art in Action next year from 19-22 July.


And finally, Axminster Tool Centre and OCVC have generously funded a new wide belt sander and table saw for the college workshops. A most welcome birthday present since launching the National School of Furniture with Bucks New University a year ago!


Captions, from top to bottom:


2. Rycotewood students outside the V&A (PHOTOGRAPH BY JOE BRAY)

3. The wood from the OneOak tree being distributed (PHOTOGRAPH BY JOE BRAY)

4. The makers of the OneOak Project (PHOTOGRAPH BY GABRIEL HEMMERY)

5. Loading the OneOak timber onto the OCVC minibus

6. Robert Ingham talking to students (PHOTOGRAPHS BY JOE BRAY)

7. The Griggio GC95 Wide Belt Sander

8. The Griggio table saw (PHOTOGRAPHS BY THE AUTHOR)

9. Chris Hyde, Head of the National School of Furniture at OCVC, with Craig Townsley of Axminster Tool Centre (PHOTOGRAPH BY JOE BRAY)

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