Amazing Bench Carving By Peter Leadbeater
Log furniture is extremely underrated in a society that values cheaply priced and even more cheaply made sleek and ‘modern’ furniture. While all but gone are the days of rustic log furniture, carved wooden furniture is gradually making a comeback as skilled craftsmen labor over their wooden artwork. This Amazing Bench Carving By Peter Leadbeater is a prime example of how beautiful log furniture can be.
Peter Leadbeater is a highly acclaimed chainsaw sculptor and log furniture maker. His bespoke designs are a direct result in his introduction to and training in how to use a chainsaw. Leadbeater has traveled the country creating masterful chainsaw sculptures for local authorities, private clients, and Michelin star restaurants, all of whom display his sculptures and log furniture proudly. Leadbeater has created commissioned, custom pieces of log art over the last 15 years, and his carvings and wooden furniture range from 8-meter tall totem carvings to free-standing and fitted furniture. Part of why Leadbeater loves his work, which is more like a hobby and a passion to him, is because chainsaw carving is a versatile art form. From a standing tree trunk to a lump of timber, each piece of wood has the ability to be transformed into something even more beautiful.
Chainsaw carving, as an art form, combines modern technology with the ancient art of woodcarving. It is also gaining in popularity. The first noted chainsaw artists were Ray Murphy and Ken Kaiser, who date back to the 1950’s. At this time, new artists began experimenting with the art form, and in the early days, chainsaw carvers loaded their carvings into the back of their trucks and functioned as traveling galleries. The 1980’s is when the art form really started to grow and as a result, the Lumberjack World Championships was created and televised in Wisconsin. Carving contests have since been held from the east coast to the west coast of the United States (as well as worldwide), bringing carvers together both to test their skills and to learn new ones. As the art evolves, special chainsaw blades and chains have been developed specifically for carving. In order to reach the extreme levels of skill required to be a “chainsaw carver,” considerable amount of instruction and practice is required, not only in the study and practice of basic carving but also in the safe operation of a chainsaw. A chainsaw cut is not just a cut; it removes a centimeter – or more – of flesh and bone, and its victim can die quickly from blood loss. While chainsaw carvers make the art form look easy, it is anything but.
One artist who makes carving wooden furniture look easy, through his seemingly effortless skill, is Peter Leadbeater. Although all of his pieces are notable, one very beautiful and stunning piece is his amazing bench carving of two large hands holding a bench seat. One can’t help but hum and quietly sing the words ‘he’s got the whole world in his hands’ when viewing this piece as it is created in such grandeur. With the details of the cupped hands, including very prominent thumbs and fingers, this bench not only looks powerful but also inviting; as if sitting upon this log furniture would make one feel safe and secure in the mighty wooden palms. While the wooden bench might be uncomfortable by today’s standards, what it lacks in comfort it more than makes up for in aesthetic value and would be a wonderful addition to any home valuing the ancient art of woodcarving.
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