The technique of steam wood bending goes much further than Thonet chairs and can be seen not only in utilitarian objects but also in massive sculptural installations by the hands and work of Charlie Whinney and its company Charlie Whinney Design
Whinney studied Architecture at Kingston University, Furniture Design at Rycotewood and 3D Design for Sustainability at Falmouth College of Arts. The need and interest of working with the matter directly in the production are revealed by his time as an apprentice artistic blacksmith with Jos Whinney, and as a product assistant for Inflate Design. In 2006 he co-founded a company – sixixis – while working in commissioned work that continued with Charlie Whinney Associates, formed two years later.
Giving a second life and purpose not only to wood, Charlie Whinney Design Workshop explore relationships between materials, people and the environment, by developing projects that blur the boundaries between fine art, architecture and design, resulting in beautiful, ecological and innovative results. These projects range from furniture, lighting, sculptures and wall art.
He has worked in several commissioned projects, such as “Dance of the Forest”, for Marriott Renaissance, Washington DC; “Spirit of the forest”, installation at Harvey Nichols stores; “Welcome Know”, for Victoria & Albert Museum; and “DNA” at Cambridge University.
Almost everything is made in the workshop in Beck Head, Cumbria, using locally sourced materials, planned and designed mostly by Charlie Whinney, who divides his time between that of a designer-maker as well as providing creative consulting services to a range of public and private clients, and running design workshops at several UK universities.
In 2012 edition of 100%Design London edition, Charlie Whinney Design Workshop will be exhibiting, and you can find them at Stand L35 .