Don Maul

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Born and raised on our family farm in Fort Collins, Colorado, I learned to work and create things with my hands.  Junior high school wood shop classes sparked a life-long interest in woodworking including antique restoration where I came to appreciate the beauty of wood and embellishment of it with fine carving in 18th century American Period furniture.

Inspiration by masters in woodworking such as George Nakashima, author of Soul of a Tree, have significantly influenced my artistic development.  Nakashima understood that wood has an inherent beauty and his artistic talent captured that beauty in its natural state with “live-edge” furniture.  As a member of the Rocky Mountain Wood turner’s group I was introduced to nationally renowned turners such as the late, David Nittmann who freely taught and encouraged me to “think outside of the box” and develop new techniques to develop wood art, and like Nakashima, let me begin to understand that woodturning could expose the natural beauty inherent in wood and could turn a non-descript chunk of wood into fine art.

My profession as a veterinarian has allowed me to develop fine manual skills through training in surgery, being creative when dealing with clinical challenges in a variety of species, and devoting my career to biomedical research where we deal with the unknown and undefined paths to solving problems every day.  These experiences have allowed me to develop the ability to “think outside of the box” and this training and experience has helped me to translate this to thinking in artistically creative ways.    Along with this, I have also been able to travel, especially in the Southwest United States where I have hiked, rafted and camped in the same areas inhabited by the early Native Americans.  I have developed a keen interest in Native American culture, art and archeology and I have read extensively about rock art, shamanism and Native American culture and spirituality.

These many and varied influences have truly stimulated my interest in creating woodturnings using figured woods and enhancing that natural beauty by incorporating Native American cultural and spiritual symbolism into the wood using pyrography, high speed air tool carving, dyeing and airbrush techniques to create fine art.  I invite you to explore these creations and hope that they inspire you.

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