GARY A. LEAKE WOODWORKING
American Bigleaf Maple with American Black Walnut
The absolutely stunning top plank of this very unique piece of art exhibits a wide variety of figured grain patterns and complexity that attest to the of alluring charisma of nature…
The basis for this piece of wood art began with the discovery of the magnificent hunk of intensely folded curl-grained (also known as tigered or fiddle-backed) American bigleaf maple (Acer macrophyllum) that was utilized to create the top and lower spreader for this work of art. Though warped, rough and dirty the timber showed just a teasing hint of the special character that lay underneath the ragged exterior - a marvelous combination of tigered-grain, wavy cross grain, randomly spaced birdseyes, chainsaw tracks (underside) and evidence of long-dead borers all highlighted by just enough chatoyance (opalescence reminiscent of looking into a cat’s eyes) to add yet another element of interest. Note how the folded grain projects forward to terminate along the natural-edged front surface. While the top plank accents the artistic nature, the lower long spreader provides the balance of design flare that mirrors the top surface.
The book-matched table legs have been fabricated from a single plank of American black walnut (Juglans nigra) selected to contrast with and complement the intense color/grain of the upper and lower longitudinal surfaces. The success of the design depends upon precise hand-chiseled blind mortise-and-tenon joints (Japanese jigoku-kusabi joinery technique) for permanent attachment of all table pieces. American black walnut burl has been utilized for the single butterfly key.
The table has been hand finished with durable oil-varnish and lacquer to highlight the natural color and protect the beautiful character of the maple and black walnut timbers 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 piece.
Dimensions: 32-1/8 inches in width, 6-3/4 – 12-3/8 inches in depth (top), 31 inches in height