Wood+Metal Furniture Collection
The exhibit, “Wood+Metal Furniture Collection by Oak Hill Iron” opens at Hamilton Williams Gallery in Morganton on Friday, December 2, and runs through January 14. The exhibit features one of a kind furniture pieces that combine thick wooden slabs with sculptural wrought iron elements made by the crew at Oak Hill Iron who will be on hand during the opening reception on Friday, from 5:30-7:30pm.
The Oak Hill Iron studio, long known for its array of hand-forged iron works, began to develop the new wood and metal furniture line several years ago as they began to assemble the equipment needed to mill large cross-sections of wood up to six and a half feet in width. The studio now boasts a collection of hundreds of impressive wood slabs measuring two to six inches thick in a variety of wood species. Due to their massive bulk, each Oak Hill Iron wood slab takes years to properly dry before being placed in a solar kiln to fully cure. The studio then selects the wood slabs with the most interesting features and design iron legs and fixtures to accentuate the character of the wood. With the history of the wood visible in the rings of each cross-section and the artful mastery of the iron work, each piece of Oak Hill Iron furniture has its own story.
The wood for Oak Hill Iron’s new furniture collection comes primarily from Burke County, harvesting from trees that have fallen due to weather, disease, or construction. Dean Curfman, founder of Oak Hill Iron, says, “Most of this [wood] comes from the biggest forest in the world, our cities. Where are the big trees? They’re in the old part of towns and cities.” By utilizing downed trees that might otherwise be chipped or left to rot, Oak Hill Iron gives them new life and creates heirloom pieces for future generations.