This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

Totemic Wooden Sculptures from Jo Wilson

TDF Open House 2017

With TDF Open House only two days away (keep an eye out for the next instalment in our behind-the-scenes video series, launching later this morning!) – we’re thrilled to introduce you to another exceptional participating artist.

Jo Wilson invited us into her Kew workshop to learn more about her unique turned wooden objects, and her vision for addressing environmental concerns and promoting sustainability through her art.

21st November, 2017

Artist Jo Wilson will unveil a series of totemic sculptures at TDF Open House this week. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

The artist in her home studio/workshop in Kew. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

The totems for TDF Open House explore  forms found in components produced at Jo’s father’s factory. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

Jo holds a deep respect for traditional craft techniques and processes, in particular drawing. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

Sketches by the artist. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

The timber artist studied a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a Master of Printmaking at Monash University, and now works as an educator in both media.  Photo – Caitlin Mills.

Several of Jo’s latest pieces see her venturing into the use of new materials and elements. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

‘I am looking forward to continuing to experiment with pairing materials with a nod to casting metals, artisan glass and stones,’ tells the artist. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

‘I am excited about the placement of my work within The Design Files vital and energetic design community, and look forward to the exposure of my work to a wider audience,’ says Jo. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

Studio details including Jo’s striking sculptures. Photo – Caitlin Mills.

Elle Murrell
Tuesday 21st November 2017

It’s not only what Jo Wilson crafts, but what she crafts it from that intrigues. The artist has a penchant for recuperating old aged timbers, and predominantly uses Australian hardwoods, like tallow wood, ironbark, and spotted gum. ‘Each section of timber holds a unique history, and I aim to bring a new life into the existing raw material, using traditional crafts, while contributing to a broader eco consciousness and reminding us of the stillness and quietness in nature,’ explains Jo.

She credits a great deal of her mastery, as well as tooling and machinery skills, to her father, who runs injection moulding company Micro Plastic. ‘The totems in this series for TDF Open House explore some of the forms found in components produced at the factory,’ explains the artist, who works between this South Dandenong site and her home studio in Kew.

Jo hand turns her art pieces on a lathe, in partnership with Ian Robertson, and several of her latest pieces see her venturing into the use of new materials and elements. ‘I have always had a deep interest in addressing environmental concerns and sustainability, and making work from reclaimed timber and telegraph poles,’ the artist begins, ‘and with these new pieces, I have also cast salvaged materials in aluminium and painted vintage timber moulds with metallic pigments – I’m always exploring texture, formal elements, surface, perfection and imperfection.’

The timber artist studied a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a Master of Printmaking at Monash University, and now works as an educator in both media. She holds a deep respect for traditional techniques and processes, in particular drawing, which she believes to be ‘the simplest, most natural process underpinning all creativity, and one that is fundamental for discovery and experimentation’.

We can’t get enough of her table-top pieces, crafted as a celebration of her love for natural materials and local timber.

See Jo’s sculptures in all their glory at The Design Files Open House, opening this Thursday November 23rd until Sunday November 26th, 10am -5pm each day. Jo will next be working on a series for Criteria Collection in 2018.

View Comments

Similar Stories

Craft

Made by Northwood

Reclaimed timber artworks from botanist-turned-woodworker, Emma Nasifa.
Elle Murrell

Studio Visit

Border Co. Hand Carved Spoons

Self-taught woodworker Justine Bolzon lays out some of her striking hand carved designs.
Elle Murrell

Craft

Erin Malloy

Graphic designer turned woodworker Erin Malloy makes handcrafted homewares in Macedon in rural Victoria.

This Week

News

An Unmissable Interior Design Trade Event Returns To Melbourne

Decor + Design will take over the Melbourne Exhibition Centre later this month, with more than 250 brands on show and a line-up of interior
Sponsored

Homes

A Stylist + Podcaster’s Layered, Textured Seaside Home

Kerrie-Ann Jones’ renovated retro pad in Sydney’s southern beaches is a sun-drenched dream home!

Architecture

The Treasure-Filled Sydney Home Of Two Global Art Collectors

House Gezellig by Studio Prineas reflects their clients’ love for modernist design principles and collection of fine art.

Shopping

8 Local Creatives Making Furniture That Doubles As Art

Meet our favourite designers and makers pushing the limits of traditional furniture with their sculptural and striking pieces!
Christina Karras

Homes

The Charming Fitzroy Rental Of Two Artists

Artists Jordy van den Nieuwendijk and Kate Isobel Scott have made their rented Fitzroy property a warm, eclectic home… without a single st...

Architecture

A Mindful Multi-Generational Family Home In Clifton Hill

The sculptural Esplanade House by Clare Cousins Architects shows how even the most modern builds can respect their heritage surrounds.
Christina Karras

Exhibition

A Reflective Exhibition At Craft Victoria Exploring 'The Everywhen'

Koorie/Yorta Yorta woman Shahn Stewart and Koorie man Eden Fiske of Alchemy Orange have guest-curated an exhibition at Craft Victoria, explo...
Bea Taylor
  22 hours ago

Gardens

A Hawthorn Home Enveloped In Dreamy, Layered Gardens

This new family home is brought to life with lush gardens designed by Peachy Green – reminiscent of a flowering ‘woody meadow’!
Christina Karras

Interiors

The New Minimalism is Warm Minimalism - And We're On Board!

Minimalism makes a comeback with this warm, textured new look. Interior designer Lauren Li takes us through how to get the look.
Lauren Li
  6 hours ago

Interiors

A ‘Jarring’ Victorian Home Resolved With Colour, Art, + Joinery

A previously mismatched Victorian home in Mosman, NSW, resolved by Ioanna Lennox Interiors with colour, art, and joinery.

Food

Julia's Irresistible Double Chocolate + Tahini Brownies

Is there anything more irresistible than a brownie? We think not! Especially Julia's, which come with double the chocolate, and a nutty swir...
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Art

Artist Cressida Campbell Is Finally Getting The Spotlight She Deserves

A new exhibition at the NGA brings together more than 140 works from the artist's life and unique practice.

Architecture

A Colourful Extension Inspired By Clinker Bricks

Wowowa’s Presto House is a vivid and respectful addition to a 1930s art deco home made from 'clinker' bricks.

Interiors

Josh + Jenna Densten’s Retro RV Renovation

Renovation pros, Josh and Jenna Densten, have transformed an outdated Winnebago Sundancer into the ultimate family holiday home on wheels!

Studio Visit

An Interior Architect’s Impressive Side Hustle - In Ceramics!

Alana Crosby is an interior architect by day – and a ceramicist by night! She's just launched a collection of hand-built ceramic lamps.

Similar Stories

Craft

Made by Northwood

Reclaimed timber artworks from botanist-turned-woodworker, Emma Nasifa.
Elle Murrell

Studio Visit

Border Co. Hand Carved Spoons

Self-taught woodworker Justine Bolzon lays out some of her striking hand carved designs.
Elle Murrell

Craft

Erin Malloy

Graphic designer turned woodworker Erin Malloy makes handcrafted homewares in Macedon in rural Victoria.

The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email bea@thedesignfiles.net