Mark Hanvey

Pith Vessel, 2009

Mark Hanvey

DF: 2009.9

The technique for making the ‘Pith Vessel’ starts with ‘Green’ or unseasoned wood which needs to be freshly felled as if left too long the wood will start to split. The piece is roughly shaped with a chain saw and then put on the Lathe between centres to true it up and attach a faceplate. The piece is then shaped, the inside of the vessel first and then mounted again on another faceplate to do the inside of the other half. Once this is done the outside is refined and finally finished between centres. After the turning is finished the carving is done on the inside. The inspiration for this piece is the wood itself. The pith of the tree, the part in the centre which the growth rings radiate from, is always a discarded part of the tree as it is usually soft and of no structural value but it has been there since the tree was a sapling and right through the life of the tree, transferring starch’s and sugars to feed it.

Materials: Irish ash

Year purchased: 2009

Location: Reconstructed Rooms: Four Centuries of Furnishings gallery

© Copyright of the National Museum of Ireland
← return to collection