The material

A lot of craftsmen use wood as a material. They share a deep passion for this living material and its rare species.

Each specialist has her or his own approach of the material. But all of them work with their body and their senses. They cut it, saw it, carve it, cut it and sometimes, taste it. Their tools, gestures and techniques differ from one specialty to another. The use of this material has evolved throughout history and is now applied to industry, design, crafts, construction, and contemporary art.

The know-how

Ornamental sculptors are polyvalent. They master drawing, modeling and volume creation (2D and 3D). The knowledge of wood species is essential. Indeed, restoration is an important part of their know-how. François Gilles, a 2019 Fondation Rémy Cointreau‘s laureate, sculpts oak, ebony, mahogany and hazelnut.

These species are essential for the wood marker who assembles them on pieces of furniture. This assembly forms a whole, revealing an abstract or figurative design. Pierre-Henri Beyssac, 2022 Fondation Rémy Cointreau’s laureate, has also created a wood marquetry painting awarded by the title of Meilleur Ouvrier de France in 2015.

Furniture is an important part of woodworking. Each craftsman, on her or his own scale, distinguishes her/himself from others by his practice. Bruno de Maistre creates innovative furniture with complex architectures. Drawers merge and disappear, while others are revealed. Bernard Mauffret and Louis Monier push the mechanical properties of wood further in furniture design. As for Steven Leprizé, he experiments and plays with the material to push the limits of its properties.

Finally, this material is used in creation. Maxime Perrolle works it with the turning technique and sculpts it afterwards to complete each piece.

All of these professions are also concerned by the preservation of this resource and by the diversity of its fields of application (architecture, design, decoration, art, etc.). While craftsmen are sourcing raw materials, many species are subject to strict rules such as pernambuco. Thus, professionals sometimes encounter difficulties but are concretely involved in the sustainable use of this precious wood.