Art Fair preview: wood work works well for this designer

Over the coming days, we're introducing some of the talented Columbus College of Art & Design students and alumni whose work will be available for purchase at the Art Fair on Saturday, April 1. The series begins with Virginia Birchfield (Interior Design, 2009). Read more here, here, here, and here.


Interior Design, Headshot of Virginia Birchfield standing in front of work in gallery

Wood, steel, and concrete are the raw materials for Virgina Birchfield’s art, furniture, and food-safe serving trays. Priced between $45 and $1,500, Birchfield’s works are stunning examples of natural form made functional.

Through her Interior Design classes at CCAD, Birchfield realized she not only wanted to design spaces, but also to design the items in them. And she had a strong background in materials: The Fredericktown, Ohio resident had gained metalworking and painting skills while working for her father’s auto restoration business.

Working out of her workshop in Knox County, Birchfield is inspired by salvaged wood, recovered from decomposed or naturally fallen trees in the area. By slicing into the wood and making it into an aesthetic and functional piece, she reveals a beauty like none other. Read more from Birchfield below, and find more examples of her work on her website, on Instagram, and on Facebook.

Interior Design, Rustic wooden serving board on wooden table with pink cupcake on a plate

What’s your philosophy/perspective behind your work?

All of my materials are locally sourced. I embrace the idea of using what is around me and making art from building materials (wood, steel, concrete) and bringing new life to deteriorated wood.

Interior Design, Abstract wooden wallhanging on a white background

Why did you want to participate in the CCAD Art Fair?

I like doing the CCAD Art Fair because it’s a great opportunity to connect and sell locally — most of my online clients are out of state. CCAD is also great for networking, and brought me some good connections.


How has your CCAD education influenced the work you will be offering for sale?

It started with my Interior Design major. I not only wanted to design the space, but also create the pieces that were in the space. I took a furniture design class and a few sculpture classes and the skills/ideas began to overlap. Currently, about 75% of my work is functional art.

Interior Design, Wooden bread board on a wooden table with a plate of three apples

Are there other important details to know about your work?

My work is never the same. As my skills and materials change, my work changes. My goal is to keep challenging myself. If I run out of a certain material, like wood, I think to myself "can I create the same idea from concrete?" — which is what I am in the process of doing right now. Follow me on Instagram or sign up for my newsletter to see my process.


CCAD Art Fair 2017

Saturday, April 1, 2017

First Look: 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.

General Admission: 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Loann Crane Center for Design (at the corner of Cleveland Avenue and Gay Street)

Parking is free. Tickets are available at the door. First Look costs $20; General Admission costs $5. Proceeds from ticket sales benefit CCAD student programming.