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Collection Wilsonart Inc.

In the 1990’s the Wilsonart Corporation, a manufacturer of plastic laminate, wanted to introduce a new product. Customers would be able to design their own graphic to be printed on the plastic sheets. They asked about two dozen furniture designers if they would like to participate in designing a laminate, and I thought it might be fun.

I also wanted to try cutting marquetry in laminate and they gave me a whole packet of different colors. Being used to beige woods I found all the colors somewhat intimidating, and decided to make a picture using gray tones. The idea was that it might seem like a stone sculpture.

I decided on a self-portrait brushing my teeth (I did use some fleshy tones for the eyes). I scraped the silver off the back of a mirror where I wanted the picture to show. This made the marquetry look like it was inlaid in the mirror.

For my laminate design I chose to repeat the phrase “What A Knucklehead” over and over in yellow and red on a gray background. From five or six feet it was too small to read and just looked like a pattern.

The handles on the doors are toothbrushes.

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