IIDEXCanada 2017
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IIDEX Woodshop Winner 2017: Isabel Ochoa & James Clarke-Hicks

IIDEX Woodshop Winner 2017: Isabel Ochoa & James Clarke-Hicks

Toronto's vibrant urban wood industry is being threatened by invasive species, old age and natural disasters. The result of which is having a devastating impact on Toronto's urban forests and canopy coverage which sees 100,000 felled trees headed to city landfills annually.

To respond to this issue, Economic Development and Culture at the City of Toronto launched the Urban Wood Industry Development Initiative in order to encourage homeowners and industries to salvage and re-use trees felled in the Greater Toronto Area.

Together with our partners at the City of Toronto, Ontario WoodAWMAC, Sawmill Sid and PCL Graphics, IIDEX Woodshop has become the place to showcase how this valuable resource can be repurposed to create innovative, market-ready commercial and consumer prototypes.

Meet the designers that will be a part of this year's 5th annual special feature collection.

About Isabel Ochoa & James Clarke-Hicks

James Clarke-Hicks and Isabel Ochoa are recent graduates of the University of Waterloo School of Architecture Bachelor of Architectural Studies Program. They have had recent works exhibited in Toronto's Come Up to my Room and the Cambridge Riverside Gallery.

What inspired you to apply for the IIDEX Woodshop 2017 competition?

We were conducting research on the process of making in a domestic setting and saw the IIDEX Woodshop 2017 competition as an opportunity to put some of that research into practice.

Why do you like working with wood as a material?

For people who wish to engage in the design of the day-to-day, wood is an extremely accessible and versatile material. 

What inspires you?

For our piece in particular and considering our background in architecture, the work of James Turell in integrating lighting and spatial design.

In your opinion, why are people drawn to wood as a material in the spaces they often frequent?

Wood has a warmth and life to it that we can recognize in contrast to synthetic materials. There is a very tactile satisfaction that comes from engaging with wood.

You get to add any new tool or piece of equipment to your workshop/studio. What would it be and why?

5 axis CNC Router. 3 axes are not enough.