biography
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Biography
wood
Turned Bowls
Wilson Arce M´┐Żndez is a Costa Rican artist with a
unique, self-taught approach to woodwork. He uses no
newly felled trees, instead
reclaiming fallen timbers
found on the beaches and farms of Costa Rica.  

His objective is to make special and unique decorative
objects by conserving and drawing on the character
and properties of each old piece of timber.

Wilson began working with wood from his early teens,
helping his older brother manufacture furniture. Later,
when Wilson was 17, he and his father established a
successful toy-making business based from the family
workshop.

In 1991, he married an Australian and the young couple
moved to
Australia . There Wilson again started up a
home workshop, producing highly detailed toys from
reclaimed woods, selling them primarily in craft
markets.

He became fascinated by the beauty and character of
the
Mallee Root, the root stock of a tree growing in the
semi-desert over hundreds of years. It is used by
Australians mostly as firewood due to its incredible
density. He began to sculpt and then to turn pieces of
Mallee Root 'borrowed' from the family wood-pile,
improvising his own tools and techniques,
experimenting with different finishes, finally having a
special lathe custom-built.

Before long, producing sculptures and turned pieces
from Mallee Root became his main occupation. His
work was enthusiastically received in prestigious
galleries throughout Australia.

Nonetheless, in 1996 the family packed up lathe and all
and set off once more for beautiful
Costa Rica. where
Wilson, his wife Lucy and their three children, Elias,
Belamy and Lily, are now based. Wilson enjoys the
wealth and variety of fallen old tropical timbers waiting
to be found on beaches and farms. He dedicates
himself to converting them into uniquely beautiful
objects.
hand sculpted
bowls
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