Bob Johnston has sculpted a veritable Noah’s Ark of 3-D animals in willow, ranging from an Aberdeen Angus to a zebra. Each creature he depicts has a sense of movement and a definite personality.
After training as a textile weaver Bob studied with master basket makers and uses traditional basket-making techniques in a contemporary way, creating an appealing fusion of ancient techniques and forms that are pleasing to the modern eye.
Growing his own organic willow, he uses more than 30 different varieties in his work. Willow is an extremely versatile material; it can be woven into traditional, functional forms such as baskets and chairs, yet it is just as suitable for creating decorative sculptures such as animal figures and heads.
He completed a commission for a life size corgi as a gift for HM The Queen to commemorate her Coronation and has sold sculptures through luxury retailers Fortnum & Mason and Holland & Holland. He has received a number of prestigious awards and his work is permanently displayed in the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum, the Smithsonian Museum, Washington DC and The Royal Dublin Society.