JEFF STOCCO, ARTIST
My bowls are a reflection of my philosophy and work. I love how they change shape as they dry after turning. While I strive for consistency, each bowl is unique and “moves” as it desires. My bowls and spoons are functional, natural, durable, food-safe, hand crafted, and beautiful, as the projects in Celebrating Birch demand.
I became hooked on wood turning after taking a class with Jim Sannerud at the Northhouse Folk School in Grand Marais, MN, about 7 years ago. Jim introduced me to “green turning”, the process of turning bowls from wood that has not completely dried. Since that first class, I took a second week-long class that introduced me to carving with a Slöjd knife, transforming pieces of birch into functional pieces for the home or cabin. I have been inspired by the book, Celebrating Birch: The Lore, Art and Craft of an Ancient Tree (Northhouse Folk School), and it has shaped my attitude toward wood and trees and ancient craft practices.
You can view a variety of my work on my Facebook page (Spring Lake Woods). I use locally-sourced wood: ash, hackberry, oak, and box elder, and a variety of woods from my arborist cousin’s business, including birch, olive, maple, walnut, and others. Cousin Ian and I like the fact that wood destined for the chipper instead finds new life in my bowls and spoons. I use only natural finishes (walnut oil and beeswax, and for painted bowls, food-safe milk paint). On figured and ornamental bowls, I apply a glossy shellac finish that is food-safe and water-based.
My bowls and spoons are for sale at the Grand Center for Arts and Culture in New Um, MN, and I sell at local craft fairs.
My bowls range from 4” to 11” in diameter, priced from $15 to $50. Nested sets of three painted bowls, $40 - 60. Serving spoons are priced at $7 to $10.