This Charles Wilson piece beautifully integrates a range of colonial period references into a traditional furniture type, a Tall Boy, which also has its origins in the late seventeenth century. The seven drawer Tall Boy brings together a love for the makeshift agricultural structures of rural Australia, the slender lines of Biedermeier furniture and the simplicity of obelisks to create a unique object. Joins and legs made from handcrafted Blackwood and finished with French Polish. Materials:
Joins and legs made from handcrafted Blackwood and finished with French Polish
H 1543mm, D (bottom drawer) 506mm & (top drawer) 363mm

A traditional furniture type with origins in the late seventeenth century, the Charles Wilson Tall Boy is influenced by a wide variety of design trends and built structures common during the colonial period.

Wilson grew up in Forbes, rural NSW, and still regularly visits the family farm. On one level the Tall Boy is an intuitive response to the rural structures Wilson has been familiar with since childhood. For instance, the unusual cross-braced legs take their inspiration from the makeshift craft traditions of bush furniture and agricultural structures such as windmills and water tanks. The wave-like forms of the drawer fronts reflect the pit-sawn architectural cladding of the time.

The fineness of the Tall Boy adapts an altogether different set of influences. The slender and gentle tapering of the entire structure simultaneously reflects the lines of Biedermeier furniture and the simplicity of obelisks; in particular Macquarie's Obelisk, which was designed by the first notable architect of the colony Francis Greenway.

Contemporary inspiration for the piece was found in the storage provided in most modern homes; vast, anonymous mirror clad built-ins for storing a variety of possessions. The Broached Colonial Tall Boy responds to these ubiquitous fixed storage spaces with a freestanding and elegant object, both highly personal and particular; a place to keep precious and important objects.

Charles Wilson

Charles Wilson is one of Australia's most celebrated industrial designers, best known for his design of upholstered furniture. He has products with Menu in Denmark, and Woodmark and King Furniture in Australia. His designs have received The Bombay Sapphire Design Discovery Award, and the Australian Design Award. Wilson's Swivel Chair and Candelabra by Menu are in the Powerhouse Museum design collection, Sydney.

Wilson's response to the Broached Colonial Commissions is a continuation of his skill for synthesising a range of influences, to achieve the most discrete and functional outcome.

Charles Wilson is a founding designer of Broached Commissions.

Dirk Leuschner, Woodcraft Mobiliar and Emily Denton, Hawthorn Polishing and Cabinetry.

Dirk Leuschner, director of Woodcraft Mobiliar, is a specialist in wood furniture, servicing some of the most highly regarded design stores in Australia. The Melbourne based Woodcraft Mobiliar workshop is equipped with a mixture of modern and traditional wood working machines, catering to any kind of project. Woodcraft Mobiliar understand the effective use of solid timber in combination with classic veneers, and the necessity of rigorous attention to detail. Leuschner began training at the age of sixteen, undertaking a traditional German apprenticeship. At age twenty-four, Leuschner opened his first cabinet-making factory, which grew to encompass an antique house in Germany. Throughout his career he has sought the most detailed, often extremely complex projects, to develop his understanding of the malleability and interesting use of wood.

So far, small projects have included: creating the entire fit out of a luxury yacht in Indian Mahogany; the restoration and French Polish of a Biedermeier Secretaire in European Cherry; and an interior fit out including bedroom furniture, sideboard, wardrobe and Tall Boy in Birdseye Maple and Wenge with veneer inlays. Larger projects of note include: managing the restoration of the timber work at The Supreme Court of Victoria; heritage listed restoration and rebuild of furniture in the State Library of Victoria's Domed Reading Room; building of a Japanese chamber in Oregon Pine with book matched veneered panel ceiling, shoji screens, tatamis framed in solid Oregon Pine, table and a little temple.

Emily Denton, Hawthorn Polishing and Cabinetry

The Tall Boy has been French Polished by Emily Denton, of Hawthorn Polishing and Cabinetry (HP&C). HP&C restore and custom make furniture to any design, polishing to create a finish to meet all requirements. Their service encompasses all types of furniture from antiques to contemporary, specialising in traditional French polishing but also modern finishing and colour-matching techniques.

Denton's finely detailed work has been commissioned for clients such as the State Library of Victoria, the Magistrates' Court of Victoria, the German Consulate and the Victorian Stock Exchange. Denton has established relationships with some of Australia's most highly regarded interior designers and builders, who seek out her workmanship for specialty projects.