< Introduction

I began fascinated with furniture during the mid 1980’s when I began...

  • #FDS-01 Lotus Wood Apothecary Chest (2008 Platinum)

    Awarded

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    This small cabinet has received the 2008 Design Journal’s ADEX Award’s first place of a Platinum Award. It was designed in January 2005 and produced by China’s wood factory in March 2005. This piece was designed with a narrower depth and a clean look to accommodate a smaller space for a good storage for the organization of personal items and for a beautiful presentation of such compact space. This item is handcrafted with the Southern Chinese Lotus wood called “He (Lotus) Mu (wood)”. It was produced in small quantity with the selected cuts of wood. Lotus wood bears many grainy knobs and holes in the raw material and the holes are often big and need to be patched. It is difficult to have larger cuts of this wood without encountering many discolorations and holes in the wood. Therefore, although wood selection is extremely careful, each piece differs in its look because of this wood character, which offers the cabinet a one-of-a-kind appeal. In trying to match the finish with the characteristic of this wood, this item is finished in a less visible matte lacquer finish over the very light blonde wood. Lotus wood in general has been used in China for making toys because of the availability of the smaller cuts of wood. 20” W x 40 ¼” H x 10 1/8” D

  • #FDS-02 “Heaven and Earth” Display Cabinet (2008 Gold)

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    The design of this massive and impressive looking display cabinet has received the 2008 Design Journals’ ADEX Award’s second place of a Gold Award. This item was designed in June 2007 and produced by China’s wood factory in July 2007. Re-designed and altered from a large one-piece antique Bai Wood (Chinese Cypress) clothing cabinet, this cabinet retains the original wood frame constructed with large wood posts in rounded shape. The original red lacquer has been stripped and finished in as light color as possible in thick hand-sanded clear lacquer layers. This now two-sectioned display cabinet is added with glass at the front and on the two sides to allow the light to go through. The bottom circular-shaped brass plates are added. Bai wood is a dense and silky Chinese soft wood used, among others, for the 17th century Chinese Ming Dynasty furniture pieces. This wood is beautiful when polished as it shows almost no grains and is one of the wood types that retain a lighter color when refinished with a lacquer finish. Because of the tapered body and the shorter and wider bottom section with its large size circular shaped brass plates, this cabinet is named "Heaven and Earth". This is a one-of-a-kind re-designed piece. This cabinet is good for displaying glass, porcelain, and tableware in a dining room. It is also excellent for displaying small size personal art collection when placed against a large size wall space. It was designed with an intention to be used in a large public space for displaying special art objects. This item has an attached plaque bearing the trademarks of Shen’s Gallery and April Shen. 51” W x 23 ½” D x 70 ¼” H

  • #FDS-03 Small Tea Display Cabinet (2008 Silver)

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    The design of this small glass display cabinet for tea wares and teas has received the 2008 Design Journal magazine’s ADEX Award’s third place of a Silver Award. This item was designed in January 2005 and produced by the wood factory in China in March 2005. It was designed with a minimized approach for Shen’s clients who were tea drinkers. For years people had come to Shen’s Gallery asking for a simple display cabinet to store their nice tea wares and teas for daily purpose. This smaller glass display cabinet is handcrafted with a dense soft wood from Southern China called "Lotus Wood". It was designed in mind with the smaller compact space where lighter color may enhance the living environment. It was produced in small quantity with the selected cuts of wood. Lotus wood bears many grainy knobs and holes in the raw material and the holes are often big and need to be patched. It is difficult to have larger cuts of this wood without encountering many discolorations and holes in the wood. Therefore, although wood selection is extremely careful, each piece will differ in its look because of this wood character, which offers the cabinet an additional one-of-a-kind appeal. In trying to match the finish with the characteristic of this wood, this item is finished in a less visible matte lacquer finish over the very light blonde wood. The concept of this design was developed over a period of time based on an available ornately carved piece with different color, different wood, different finish, and ultimately totally different look and feel. Over the course of time, this item was adjusted and re-designed to be a completely different piece. 22 5/8” W x 14 5/8” D x 55 1/8” H

  • #FDS-05 Ming Dynasty Bai Wood Dining Table (2009 Platinum)

    Awarded

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    This large table has received the 2009 Design Journal’s ADEX Award’s first place of a Platinum Award. This piece was re-designed and refinished in late spring-early summer of 2008. This large table had been sitting in a storage yard for several years, broken to pieces with lots of losses and hundreds of metal nails inadequately inserted. My guess was that this table was originally a very large size table possibly used by the painter or calligrapher. Parts of the legs were gone. The ornately carved corner spandrels at the four corners underneath the table top were badly carved-this looked reproduced and did not match the beautiful carved beaded lines on the supports under the table top and between the four legs that made up part of the frame of the table. So, the corner spandrels were taken out to keep a clean look of the form and to also keep in line of the overall good workmanship in the woodworking of this table. The wood panels inserted in the frame (a “Floating-Panel” construction) for the tabletop were not salvageable. So, they were replaced by the American poplar wood to keep the same finished color as the rest of the table, which is made of Chinese Cypress, Bai wood, a silky and light color softwood identified in the 17th century Ming Dynasty furniture pieces. Originally there were narrow single-bands constructed all along the four sides of the table served as a ‘waist” area in between the table top and the supported wood frame that now joins with the legs underneath the table top. These bands were broken and were taken out in order to keep a good clearance height under the table to allow adequate room for knees to comfortably rest under the table when sitting, while the total height of the table does not succeed 30” in height to allow for comfortable dining. The integrity of the original form of the table was kept as much as possible in respect of the history and the excellent material of the piece. All the nails were taken out and replaced with wood pegs. The restoration and the re-design of this table, which gave this object a new life, is a 2008 collaborated project between April Shen, the designer, and the long-time Santa Cruz local fine furniture maker, David Perry. 82 ¼” W x 35” D x 30” H

Other Designs
  • #FDS-04 Dresser with Carved Bamboo Frame

    Other

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    This item was designed in March 2005 and produced in China in August 2005. Since then, it has been reproduced with a variation only. This medium size dresser is handcrafted with a dense soft wood from Southern China called "Lotus Wood". The top of the dresser is fitted with a rattan mat over the wood board. The rattan mat, instead of an exposed wood board, makes the surface more wear-and-tear, as the rattan does not show the dirt or the scratches as easily as a wood surface. The frame of the dresser is hand-carved in a bamboo motif all around. The bamboo design is highly regarded in both Chinese woodwork and in Chinese culture for the beauty of its material and for its connection with the nature and the high artistic and morale standard symbolized by the artisans and scholars. This dresser was designed with two variations: one with only three horizontal large drawers, and one with two smaller drawers on top followed by two large drawers underneath horizontally across the body. The drawers have a generous depth to allow for ample storage. This product is produced in limited quantity only. Because Lotus wood bears many grainy knobs and holes in the raw material, the holes are often big and need to be patched. It is difficult to have large cuts of this wood without encountering many discolorations and holes in the wood. Therefore, although wood selection is extremely careful, each piece will differ in its look. This dresser was designed with the intention to be used in pairs for best look. 34” W x 19 ¾” D x 40 3/8” H

  • #FDS-07 “Red Blossom” Step Tansu

    Other

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    This item was designed in early July 2008 and produced by the wood factory in China in late July 2008. “Tansu” is a term for traditional style Japanese furniture pieces such as cabinets and chests with storage function. “Step Tansu” was traditionally used as a stairway at the old Japanese farmhouse. The old pieces were usually made in much larger size than this one. The “Red Blossom” is designed with the minimal use of lines and less complexity in the wood construction, except for the floral carving which carries from one component to the next, to compliment the modern décor. This piece is composed of a bottom base with four components, two of the standing taller pieces with two smaller single-box style pieces at the right side top and the left side bottom of the piece. The two smaller pieces are exactly half size of the two taller pieces. This feature is designed for the easy production of the woodwork and for easy shipping if a larger quantity is ever to be produced. This small 5-sectional unit made of Northern Chinese elm is designed for the compact space under a stairway or an entryway for storing shoes, books, or other items. The Chinese style hand-carved open woodwork in plum blossom is a twist and take-off from the traditional Japanese style. The idea of this design came from a poetic thought of lingering plum blossoms and shadows sweeping at night, a poetic scene often presented in classical Chinese poems & paintings. One day a customer walked in and asked if I had a red color step tansu. I replied no, but one could be made. Afterwards this customer has decided to pursue something else. But I was so fascinated with the idea that a tansu furniture piece could be made with the red color. It seemed so exotic. So, I went ahead and designed this piece. I wanted it to be something a little bit different. And here it is! Red is an auspicious color commonly used in Chinese weddings and other celebrated occasions. For me, it represents something fanciful and a wish for something special to come. 39” W x 16” D x 35 3/8” H

  • #15224 Japanese Two Drawer Tansu Chest

    Japanese and Other Art Decorative & Collectibles Other ...

    850.00

    675.00

    Japanese two drawer tansu. Dimensions: 32 3/4"w x 20 1/4"d x 25 1/4"h

  • #FDS-10 Step Tansu with Slat Design

    Other

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    This item was designed in early July 2008 and produced by the wood factory in China in late July 2008. “Tansu” is a term for traditional style Japanese furniture such as cabinets and chests with storage function. “Step Tansu” was traditionally used as a stairway at the old Japanese farmhouse. The old pieces were usually made in much larger size than this one. This piece is composed of a bottom base with four components, two of the standing taller pieces with two smaller single-box style pieces at the right side top and the left side bottom of the piece. The two smaller pieces are half size of the two taller pieces. This is designed for the easy production of the woodwork and for easy shipping if a larger quantity is to be produced. This small 4-sectional unit made of Northern Chinese elm is designed for the compact space under a stairway or an entryway for storing shoes, books, or other items. The all-slat design gives this traditional Japanese style tansu piece somewhat of a more modern and slick flavor with its straight lines, while keeping the subtlety of its Japanese flavor with the vertical “crossed bars” construction for its slat design and a matching subtle matte finish in the medium wood tone. The choice of the Northern Chinese elm gives a similar look to the traditional Japanese Keyaki hardwood with its beautiful obvious grains, balancing the straight line of the design with a softer look. 38 ¾” W x 15 ½” D x 35 1/*” H

ADEX AWARD from DESiGN JOURNAL

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2404 Mission Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95060   

Phone: (831)457-4422   email: customerservice@shensgallery.com