2pm Sunday 27 November, 2016
Opened by Evan Dunstone
Principal – Dunstone Design
Bungendore Wood Works Gallery
Exhibition continues until 7 February, 2017
A productive combination of discipline and single-minded dedication, has led fine furniture maker Darren Oates along a rewarding yet unpredictable career path. Darren sees his earlier working life in the Royal Australian Air Force as an invaluable step towards the great adventure of striking out on his own.
Harbouring a fascination for working in timber for over twenty years, Darren graduated from the prestigious Sturt School for Wood in 2007 and has evolved as a successful commercial furniture maker in what can be a very fickle marketplace. His acceptance on both the design level and through his acquired production skills has led to a steady stream of sales of both speculative pieces and commissioned works.
After eight years of furniture design and production from his Hawkesbury River region workshop in NSW, he feels more than ready to exhibit his work to a wider, discerning audience while at the same time challenging his own creativity and skills.
A penchant for Australian native timbers like Spotted Gum, Iron Bark, Red Cedar, Victorian Ash, Swamp Oak and more, has led him to concentrate on reclaimed timbers from trees removed to make way for housing estates, industrial areas, roads and farmland.
His intent is based in a respect for the timber, hoping that his pieces will adopt an eventual antique-of-the-future status long after the houses and factories (erected where the trees once stood) have disappeared.
While admiring the furniture of the likes of Frank Lloyd Wright and Charles Rennie Mackintosh; and being mesmerised by the steam bent work of Matthias Pliessnig, with an additional touch of the allure of everything Art Deco, Darren Oates is adamant that his furniture be totally of his own design; based upon simple lines that allow the timber to shine, imbuing each piece with its own unique integrity.
Darren’s only desire is to produce work that will not be looked on as being either unobtainable or esoteric, while always exuding respect for his chosen creative media.