ccbc artist interview with robert jakobsen

ccbc artist interview with robert jakobsen

Could you tell us briefly what you make? 

I work with wood to create functional art. My primary focus is on wooden boxes anhandmade wooden chacuterie boardd home décor items such as charcuterie boards. As well, I build furniture on commission. I like clean simple lines that showcase the grain patterns, colours and texture of the wood to bring out the beauty in the piece created. I consider myself a hybrid woodworker, which is to say I use power tools such as planers  jointers and routers etc. but hand tools play a very important part of the fine details in my finished pieces.

What inspired you to make your pieces, or how, conceptually, did your work come to be?

I’ve always been drawn to the concept of creating things with wood. From a very young age I would experiment with my father’s tools on scrap pieces of wood left over from construction projects. It wasn’t until I graduated university that I really started focussing on woodwork with the aim to make functional items I could use around the house. As my knowledge and skills with the craft evolved, I began to really appreciate the beauty of wood and its versatility as a creative medium. To me form and function of a piece should be thoughtfully combined to give rise to work that is inviting to look at and touch but begs to be used at the same time. This philosophy is probably best reflected in the boxes I make.

handmade wooden jewellery box



Why do you make craft?

I thoroughly enjoy the creative process and working with my hands. I especially enjoy working with wood as a medium because of its versatility and the unique way it behaves. The more I work with wood the more opportunity I have to explore the medium and explore the myriad of techniques I can use to create with it.


Has your work evolved over time, if so, what has that looked like?

As a woodworker my skillset in the craft has improved drastically over the past twenty years. My first attempts at creating were very pedestrian resulting from a

lack of understanding of how to work with the medium and the tools used in it. As my knowledge of the craft developed so to did the pieces I created. It is difficult to compare what I was making fifteen years ago to present day as my knowledge and skill set has improved exceedingly in that time period. There are near endless possibilities of techniques in woodworking to explore and I look forward the challenge of experimenting and learning and developing as a woodworker.


Are there ideas, values, beliefs, or concepts that your work communicates? Could you tell us a bit more about that? 

My work is all about the natural beauty of wood and respecting the gift the natural resource bestows upon us. I look at creating with wood as giving the resource a chance to communicate its value on a personal level. The beauty and versatility of wood speaks to the need for more respect and care for our relationship with the natural world.


What would you say to emerging or young craft artists?

Ultimately you want to thoroughly enjoy the creative process of your chosen craft. Personally, I find the more I enjoy the process with wood the better the end result in the final piece. Don’t hesitate to try new techniques as this will only serve to fuel your imagination to create and can often aid you visualizing new possibilities.



Images in order of appearance

Robert Jakobsen
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Our intention with this series is for readers to connect with the incredible artists in our space, consider craft through the lens of an artist and encourage people in their own journey with craft. The CCBC’s Artist Interview Series is published on the 15th of each month.