Grove Launch! +Partay~

April 20th, 2010 by admin Its official!  We just launched our new company Grove yesterday.   Grove is a partnership between myself and Joe Mansfield of Engrave.  Our first product is a laser engraved bamboo iphone case!

Our site is essentially a place where you can make your own case.  Enjoy browsing the artist series or upload your own artwork. Or simply get a blank case.  You can select one of 3 bamboo body colors and 7 bezel colors.  Know that these cases aren’t getting made in some sweatshop overseas.  Were making them in my shop!


After months of top secret R&D, we’ve perfected our bamboo iphone cases - and we’d like to celebrate with you. The Grove launch party will go down during the open studio night at Towne Storage (17 SE 3rd #502) on May 1st 6pm-10pm.

We’ll be giving a bamboo iphone case away every hour and the winners can choose artwork to be laser engraved on the spot. There will be new laser engraved artwork on display by Jolby & Friends and we’ll be pouring Vortex IPA from Fort George Brewery. If you’re in Portland on the 1st, stop by with a glass and friends.

See ya there!

win a bamboo iphone become facebook fan

Denver Scuplture at Night

November 1st, 2009 by admin

Denver Sculpture lit up at night.  BambooDNA crew tried to arrange ourselves so we would all appear to be the same height through perspective but screwed up and did it backwards!  (im the shortest guy)

Bamboo Dining Table Design

October 26th, 2009 by admin

Here are few early designs I did for a new client.  She likes my gingko table and wants a dining table with the opposing leg design and through tenons on top.

Ive always wanted to scale the gingko up in size.  The main issue is the lower opposing leg will get in the way of feet, knees, chairs if its at a diagonal.  My solution is to align the legs in a cross so the legs interfere with sitting but right where there would be a division anyway.

Id like to use 1.5″ bamboo for the top but it only comes in 30″ wide.  There will have to be a deliberate seam that will also be a design feature.  It looks nice to have the seam follow the construction of the legs.

Another solution is to scrap the opposing legs altogether.  I played around with running the grain the opposite direction on the top here.

Denver Sculpture Part2.

October 20th, 2009 by admin

We revisit the sculpture we built as BambooDNA at the MileHigh Music Festival earlier this summer in this blog post part1.  Brief recap: we unloaded the prefabricated columns and erected them by hand using pulleys and rigging ingenuity.

Next up: the big guns!  We had an ENORMOUS crane help us erect the center column.  Yah, it was a little overkill to use a $1.3million 135ton crane (270,000lbs) with a 266ft maximum extension to erect a 700lb spire but thats how we fly- in style.  And it looked cool to top it off!

The column nested into a steel ring in the center and the riggers tied it off to the structure with guy wires.  The heroic Kevin Rowell then climbed the spire and released the crane.

Next we put up the bright red sails.  They are made of spandex like material and are very flexible.  We tie them on with a secret technique involving small rocks wrapped in fluorescent tape.

Wala!  We have TENSEGRITY (structures with an integrity based on a synergy between balanced tension and compression components).  Nerdy yes and cool yes.

This was a great build.  Our fearless leader Gerard Minakawa has our operation running at full efficiency.  We knocked it out with no problem and had time to go rafting, jump off 40 ft cliffs, run down glaciers barefooted, and even hit the casino!

We’ll end with me pretending to work ;) having too much fun with a bamboo hatchet.

Furniture Designer-Thomas Huang

January 16th, 2009 by admin

I had the privilege of seeing the work of Thomas Huang and meeting him for the first time tonight at Oregon College of Arts and Craft.  His work is in a group show displaying there through February 22.

Notice the connections between the three materials he uses: bamboo strips, laser cut steel, and rough sawn wood.  Unnoticed to most is the skill, care, and time required to prep the bamboo into these delicate strips.

Tom learned how to work bamboo from my friend Jiro Yonezawa here in Portland a few years back.  According to local lore- he moved out here on a whim and lived in Jiros basement, learning from the master all while eating only bananas and soft serve ice cream. Ok… only part of that is true.

Tom is faculty now in the Industrial Design department at the University of Kansas.  I actually emailed him 5 years ago asking for advice as I faced a crossroads in my education.  He doesnt remember giving me advice, and I dont remember what he said.

Nonetheless I remember he tried his very best to be helpful and I appreciate that.  Thanks Tom- whatever you said worked!  Im continuing the chain by being as helpful as possible to young people- ok that makes me sound O L D.

GLOBAL “CROSS CULTURALIZATION” places us all in a state of negotiation and resolution.  My work reflects this condition through the reconciliation of dissimilar materials within the language of furniture.  It is a language that celebrates physical sensuality, emotional sentiment, and visual harmony; a common global language.  I am drawn to the potential of funriture objects to enable intimacy and to the care and detail of their making.

So of course I told him about Project Chaboo. He shyly asked me if he could participate.  Are you kidding me?  It would be an honor.  Stoked!