GARY A. LEAKE WOODWORKING
American Bigleaf Maple with American Black Walnut and Stained Glass
For lovers of the color blue, few experiences are as rewarding to the eye or as moving to the sole as looking into a deep body of cold water. This piece of wood art reminds the artist of his first look into Crater Lake, Oregon - into the deep blue.
The basis for this work of art began with the discovery of the magnificent piece of American bigleaf maple (Acer macrophyllum) that was utilized to create the top surface. The tabletop features a natural void reminiscent of an undiscovered lake.
The American bigleaf maple timber, appropriately named in deference to its colossal leaves that can span up to 15 inches across, originated from the Pacific Northwest. A sampling of the varied character so wonderfully exhibited within the timber includes intense figuring (quilted, curly, fiddleback, and tiger), spalting (gray to black discoloration due to fungi), insect damage and saw marks. Being a fine-grained timber, maple holds the crisp edges of the hand-beveled top.
The table base has been fabricated from figured curly American black walnut (Juglans nigra) that has been selected and milled to complement the tabletop's figure and design. This stable heavy timber with its naturally developed medium-to-dark ranging browns punctuated with traces of black grain was an obvious choice for this piece. The square legs exhibit a slight taper on the inner surfaces that balances the design. Hand-fitted mortise and tenon joints have been used throughout to add strength and stability to the table.
The table has been hand finished with a durable oil-varnish to highlight the natural color and protect the beautiful character of the wood while giving the table a warm feeling to the touch. As with all of his wood art pieces the title of the piece, creation date and artist information has been permanently stamped on the underside of the table.
Dimensions: 14-1/4 inches in width, 43-3/8 inches in length, 31 inches in height