A unique mirrored pair of benches made with very rare burr timber from an ancient Scottish Elm tree, sculpted with the Pictish Cup and Ring symbol.
The sense of the beauty is enhanced by knowing that these benches are are a unique mirrored pair, made from the same piece of timber. The patina shines through like seams of silver. The cup and ring is an ancient symbol from Pictish Bronze Age Britain, from as early as six and seven thousand years ago. Hand-carved, the sculpture reflects and channels the light, just as the ancient relief in stone would collect and channel water.
The Hownam Studio icon is embedded in the end grain.
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The entire upper surfaces of the benches were carved by hand, creating a subtle tactile beauty that one is drawn to touch. Elm timber naturally darkens over time and so we have accelerated this to enhance its aesthetic appeal. The master craftsmen have torched and applied black Sumi Ink to bring out the lustrous rich black and grain of the wood. In Japan, this process is called Shou Sugi Ban, charring to preserve the timber beneath the surface. Our design intensifies the beautiful grain; the patina shines through like seams of silver.