Thread: Nest Sculpture
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Old 02-08-2012, 11:00 AM
CMortenson CMortenson is offline
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 4
Default Nest Sculpture

Hello Festoolers!

I've been brainstorming a wood sculpture for some time now and had the good fortune to meet Poto in the airport, who led me to your site. I've met some of you on the new members section, but let me preface my first on-topic post by saying that I'm studying fine art and have no prior woodworking experience--well, maybe a few birdhouses in second grade with Mr Pete.

I want to build a kind of human-sized nest (meditation hut, mini-forest, personal cathedral). I imagine this sculpture combining woodworking and weaving to join whole hazel branches in a central hub. This central joint at the base would have to be strong enough to resist the tension of the branches as they curve upwards into a kind of egg shape, being held in place by very tight weaving (probably willow).

Here are some photos of my model to hopefully make things clearer -

Sorry about the vertical photos I couldn't figure out how to rotate them.

Hazel is flexible, but not extremely so, probably less than bamboo (and there is some amazing bamboo architecture being made right now) but it does happen to be local and fairly plentiful in my neighborhood, and I thought it best to use whole wood for its strength. I've considered steam bending or notch-cutting the branches to make a precise arc, Poto has suggested a central stone hub which would work exactly like the cog I used to make my model. But ideally I want these hazel beams to appear to join magically in the center like some kind of lotus. And the most important thing is that this joint will need to be really strong, the sculpture needs to be stable enough to support the weight of someone climbing in and out through the opening at the top. That'll require a lot of effort for anyone who wants to get in, but I wanted it to be isolated on all sides.

Ideas? Please let me know if this doesn't make any sense and in the meantime I'll scan some drawings.

I hope this will make a fun puzzler and maybe something completely different for your forums, like I said I'm handy but I don't know a whole lot about woodworking yet so for now I'm building lots of models, experimenting with materials, shapes and designs. And making life-size drawings when I get too frustrated with my tiny models.

I am Wide Open to any and all suggestions.
Thanks so much, I'll be getting back real soon with more images.

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