Panel on wall "Solo Artist Sara Tabbert: Lowlands" provides an intro as we peek into the gallery with little cabins on display atop different height tables.

Gallery view of Sara Tabbert’s solo exhibition featuring The Collector’s Cabin.

Photograph by Michael Penn

  • The Collector’s Cabin
    Birch, larch, alder, spruce recycled print blocks, various reclaimed wood

The Collector’s Cabin is made from multiple hand-carved boxes and vessels that utilize the most tree-like form of wood. Built on the footprint of a small shed or cabin, this piece reflects on the quirky, makeshift and sometimes lonesome structures found throughout Alaska. To me, it contains thoughts of woodpiles and log walls, reclaimed and reused materials, constructions that lean and bend with shifting ground.

The components of this installation were made using a Scandinavian shrink box technique in which the green wood rounds are hollowed by hand and a slightly smaller dry bottom piece is cut and tapered to fit into a groove carved in the base of the round. The box is left to dry, capturing the base tightly and a lid is made to fit the final shape. By making these dense small-scale objects, I am learning to adapt to the shape of trees and the whims of wood.