Alexander Bannan is a Richmond, Virginia based furniture maker, originally from Roanoke, Virginia, a small city at the far reaches of the Shenandoah Valley in the Appalachian Mountains. Growing up in this historic and diverse community of artists, musicians, and craftsmen influenced his artistic endeavors in his young adulthood. In 2016 he received a Bachelor’s of Fine Art in Craft/Material Studies with a focus on woodworking and furniture design from Virginia Commonwealth University’s School of the Arts, Richmond, Virginia. While at VCU he discovered his infatuation for wood and the traditions that surround furniture building.
Bannan is drawn to furniture because it is a recognizable and universally engaging medium. Its functionality in the home makes a piece of furniture both a utilitarian and uniquely curated object. On the surface his work is functional furniture and wooden objects, but they stem from a deep appreciation for his hometown and the surrounding geologic formations. Bannan has begun to reclaim, recycle, and repurpose wood when possible in conjunction with other locally sourced lumber. This is done in an effort to harken back to traditions of woodworking and furniture building from his home in the Appalachian Mountains. By using repurposed material, he also seeks to work in a more environmentally conscious manner.
Currently Bannan works out of a shared studio space in Richmond with several former classmates. He makes and sells furniture and other wooden items on commission and from designers. Bannan also travels to crafts schools around the country, like Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Deer Isle, Maine and Anderson Ranch Arts Center near Aspen, Colorado to study contemporary and traditional furniture techniques. Bannan has three pieces in the upcoming show Sitting Pretty: The Chair Re-Evisioned (June 21, 2018-August 12, 2018) At the Moss Arts Center, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg. His work was featured in From These Woods in the summer of 2017 at The Moss Arts Center, and Constructed Visions II at the St. Louis Artist's Guild in St. Louis, Missouri in early 2017.