A designer creates new wood from forest debris

Japanese designer Yuma Kano has created an innovative wood material from forest debris and waste wood that can be used to design furniture with fascinating surface patterns.

Named ForestBank, the new material is made from small trees, foliage, bark, seeds, dirt and other items considered worthless for building or furniture. This wood waste is mixed with a reactive mineral base and a water-based acrylic resin that does not use organic solvents or volatile organic compounds.

“ForestBank is not just lumber, but material design that seeks to find the variety of value in entire forests,” says Kano.

These materials have patterns that vary depending on the angle and depth of the cut, as well as changes in the seasons and the state of the forest at the time of harvest. For example, ForestBank’s signature yellows and greens are the actual coloring of the trees, while the leafy greens used in the mix can change to orange and brown with the seasons.

Forest floor dirt can be used to add browns and blacks. Complex patterns can be produced using the cross-sections of roots and seeds usually hidden in the ground. Also, different tree species have different colors, which will also be reflected in ForestBank.

“By looking at the ubiquitous nature of wood from a different angle and finding new value, a new material that condenses the entire forest was found,” says Kano.

The designer says ForestBank can be used to create furniture and interiors using ordinary carpentry tools and techniques. Kano’s innovation is not limited to just forest debris; ForestBank can also be made from waste left over from tree pruning, or even scrap wood from carpentry workshops to create original designs that tell a unique story.

Photograph: taken by Kusk

About Gertrude H. Kerr

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