Artist Statement


I create wood vessels which are begun on a lathe. The raw material, in the form of logs or billets, may initially weigh as much as 1500 pounds. Whether the material weighs hundreds of pounds or can be held in one hand, the techniques involved in producing the work is relatively the same. After a vessel is shaped on a lathe it is hollowed out down to a wall thinness of between 1/4 and 3/32 of an inch. 


Once a piece is is removed from a lathe other processes may take place including but not limited to carving, texturing, and color enhancement. Finally, numerous thin layers of lacquer are applied to the surface of the object.


Sometimes I have in mind a particular plan from start to finish. Other times serendipity plays a hand in the formation of the finished piece. Be that as it may, I am striving to produce work whose foundation rests both on technical skills, and an interpretation of the material. However, I do not want my work to merely be a showcase for technical ability. Through the work, I am addressing issues which have to do with natural cycles and rhythms, and the dialectic of order-disorder as applied to human existence. I am engaged in producing work which not only expands the view of traditional shapes but hopefully opens up new vistas for exploration.


Richard Carner

Rare Black mangrove vessel in private collection

Sculpture and Wood Turning by Richard Carner