Creating sculptures from wood is a centuries-old tradition. However, what’s unique about these sculptures by Jeffro Uitto is that they’re made using only driftwood, roots, burls and natural found wood. Jeffro, who goes by the name “Knock on Wood” on social media, is able to bend the wood to his imagination in such a cool way that it does not even begin to compare to others.
According to the artist, ever since he was a child he liked collecting wood — especially driftwood that had patterns beaten into them by the waves. Today he continues to use wood as his creative outlet and even has his own shop in Tokeland, Washington, where he works on custom orders, commissions, and personal projects. Using various pieces of wood, mostly found on the beaches in Washington State, he creatively transforms them into furniture, as well as sculptures that mainly depict animals such as horses, eagles, rhinos, lions, and others.
“On the Washington coast, there’s a place where nature’s leftovers get a second chance at stardom. The place is Knock on Wood, and [I am] the artist making the magic happen.”
Every project that comes out of Jeffro’s shop enjoys the same careful construction, whether it’s a rosebud made from cedar shavings or a commissioned sculpture. Surprisingly, most of Jeffro’s tools are handmade by the artist himself. And when starting a driftwood sculpture, Jeffro has an initial idea of what will be done but adapts as the work progresses. He never knows exactly what will result from his work. Each sculpture can take years to create and finding the right piece for each project can take months at a time.
The various sticks, wooden slabs, and roots that he finds are cured and eventually found a fitting home as the artworks come together. And through his driftwood creations, the artist wants to emphasize that each object has its own life; a life that can be conveyed as a piece of art.
“It’s really nature inspired, the love and curiosity for the subjects and the infinity of materials. It’s really humbling to see how many people connect with the work. It’s also important to bring attention to these animals, their mysterious beauty and the extinction they face.”
Take a look at a few more of his driftwood creations below and follow Jeffro on Instagram.