Sensuous hand planed curves, simplified lines and a meticulously detailed joints are some of the features that distinguish Stephen O’Briain’s furniture.
Trained as a fine art painter, Stephen first became interested in the possibilities of furniture design after seeing the work of Russian Master craftsman, James Krenov. What started as a hobby soon became a full time profession. The transition from paint to wood made all the easier by a tradition of woodworking in the family that stretches back three generations. Stephen’s work may have evolved stylistically from those early years but Krenoves influence lives on in his love of working with hand-tools and his search for simple but elegant design solutions.
Working almost exclusively in solid timber, both native and imported, Stephen’s work over the last few years has taken on an increasingly organic quality. In the design of a piece of furniture, his instinct is to find a balance between the function of that piece and its sculptural form. Underlying the strikingly beautiful simplicity of all Stephen’s work is a mastery of the complexities of good design and a genuine love of his materials.
Over the years Stephen has produced a large portfolio of work and exhibited extensively, with clients in Ireland, Britain and the United States.
As well as these private commissions, Stephen has also worked on larger corporate and public commissions including furniture for Government Buildings (Dublin) and the Irish Embassy, Tel Aviv.