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Professor David Landry’s UH Manoa Art Utilitarian Sculpture summer course crafted beautiful furniture from the young-growth koa.

The Project:  To make a piece of furniture to hold shoes and to be sturdy enough and comfortable for sitting. Students could use an additional wood to augment the amount of koa they were given. Class projects were displayed and critiqued by ASID at a Design within Reach evening event at Ala Moana Shopping Center in addition to being displayed in the Art Department Commons Gallery.

View a short video clip on the UH website on what the UH Manoa art students did with the young koa:

Verbal Feedback:

  • First furniture project or at least most of the students.
  • Students loved using koa.
  • Students are already asking if the wood will be available for next summer. Sounds like a draw to bring in new students.
  • Students were from art and architecture as well as other departments.
  • Getting wood rough milled and having the experience of planing to usable format was instructive and fun.
  • Some students used the color differential in the koa as part of their design

Photos by Hongtao Zhou and Travis Idol.

The Young-Growth Koa Wood Quality Assessment and Demonstration project was sponsored by USDA Forest Service Pacific Northwest (PNW) Research Station and the Northern Research Station and the University of Hawai‘i. Others involved include Kamehameha Schools, Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, and Parker Ranch. HFIA contracted with subcontractors to harvest and mill the project trees.

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