Out of Nakashima’s Shadow
A chest designed with deference and difference
Synopsis: This chest by Stewart Wurtz was designed to go into a home owned by avid collectors of George Nakashima’s work. Wurtz wanted to honor Nakashima with the design while bringing his own sensibility to the project. See how he did it.
I built this chest of drawers for a couple near Seattle who have been avid collectors of George Nakashima’s work since they bought a live-edge dining table from him in the early 1980s. Nakashima’s vocabulary is a powerful presence in their modest waterfront home, and I wanted to honor this in the furniture I created. But I also wanted to bring my own sensibility to the project.
At heart, Nakashima’s furniture is about celebrating the material: what the plank has brought to the piece. I really respect that, but deferring to the wood leaves a lot up to chance. I wanted this chest to have…