Steam-bend a spiral
Helical legs and a conical shade combine in a beautiful lamp.
Synopsis: The twisted legs on Jesse Shaw’s Prometheus lamp are made possible by steam-bending. After steaming the solid-wood legs, a twisting jig is used to bend them all into a helical shape. After they are fully cured, hoops at the top and bottom keep the lamp base in shape.
I discovered an appreciation for the interplay of wood and light years ago while I was sitting on the steps of the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship in Rockport, Maine. As I held a thin shaving of maple burl up to the sun, the grain glowed a rich amber-red hue with thin radiant circles outlining the cellular tubes of the wood. I was mesmerized by this effect. As I sat staring deeper into the grain, the sun continued to elicit previously untapped natural beauty in the raw material. The design for the shade of my Prometheus Lamp grew out of that…