Woodworker

Peter Giles


Born in the UK in 1963, Peter went on to study engineering and race motorcycles. After travelling through Europe and America, he emigrated to Australia in 1989.

Peter developed a passion for wood and a respectful fascination for fine furniture out of necessity. When living in Sydney, he utilised his small one and a half square metre balcony to try and to make bespoke pieces of furniture to fit out the small apartment.

In 2001, saddled by the yoke of precession, function, fit and an austere aesthetic from his engineering days, Peter enrolled at the Australian National University School of Art. Under the masterful and generous guidance of Dr Rodney Haywood, Giles embarked on what has become an ever evolving journey of making.

His work starts from a respect of the beautiful material that is hard wood; with the premise that the piece of furniture to be made should endure visually and functionally for at least as long as the timber used to make it took to grow. For Peter, this drives not only the design, but in particular the way in which the object is put together, along with an informed understanding of the timber selected and pieces used. This when done well, can elevate the piece to become an object of art.

During Peter’s research and study at University, he became fascinated and in awe of Chinese furniture, in particular the Ming period (1368–1644). Peter believes the craftsmen from that time were the masters of the approach he uses in his own practice today.

Back