Studio Profile: Neil Turner of Turner & Turner

Studio Profile: Neil Turner of Turner & Turner

A tall man turned towards the camera dressed in a blue jumber with khaki work pants and heavy, desert boots stands in front of three shelves stacked with various sized & shaped wooden objects.

Turner + Turner products showcase the contemporary style and fine woodworking skills of Neil Turner. Neil primarily uses Australian timbers and works in a highly sympathetic way with the material, the natural features of the timber informing the finished piece.

Woven through all of Neil's artwork is a deep respect for the material and the natural forces that have acted upon it. He looks for the quiet ripples eroded in soil by wind, the delicate eddies left by water, and the swirling lick of flames.

Observing the subtle interplay of light and shadow, he creates fluid forms from solid wood, working with the material's natural grain direction and pattern, blemishes and voids.

Each piece of West Australian timber tells its own story, and the whole process can take months: from sourcing and drying the timber, to turning and sealing it. 

A large variety of different shaped and sized kitchen utensils in various wood grains on a grey specked concrete background

What do you make?

Wooden kitchen utensils, boards, bowls, vases and vessels from West Australian timber.

What do you love most about working with wood?

I love the tactile nature of timber. The uncertainty of timber, not really knowing what’s inside when creating a piece. If the piece of timber has imperfections not seen when chosen the initial thought might have to change, this can be a surprise. Timber has a warmth and feel that I really love. 

Describe your studio space
I work out of a large shed with a mix of timber storage and studio spaces.
At one end various large shelving systems to accommodate slabs and sticks of timber for furniture. A variety of large workshop benches, cast iron wood working machinery with ducted air purification take-up the middle section.
I have a separate enclosed area for carving - with good lighting - and woodturning block storage.
A separate compact enclosed room with good lighting from north & west facing windows is ideal for woodturning. My space is climate controlled, insulated and ducted for shavings removal and all tools are in close proximity.
Which new technique are you currently exploring?
None at present as I am working on demonstration pieces for future teaching. 
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