Carved Koa Hawaiian Island Chain by Greg Eaves Approximately 30″x 60″ (Representative) $590
About the artist
Woodcrafter Greg Eaves comes from a long line of Kama’aina craftsmen in Hawai’i. Greg’s great-grandfather, Christian Gertz Jr., moved to Hawai’i in 1853 at the age of 15 and was trained by the renowned Wilhelm Fisher, one of Honolulu’s finest cabinetmakers of the time. Mr. Gertz made two of the three pieces entered into the 1873 World’s Fair by Fisher, whom he eventually bought out upon his retirement. Mr. Gertz was later chosen to build the grand koa and kamani wood staircase in the Iolani Palace which was completed for King Kalakaua in 1882. He is now prominently featured in the book “Hawaiian Furniture & Hawaii’s Cabinet Makers”. His son George Gertz continued the tradition as a respected Honolulu boat builder in the early 20th century. Greg’s father, Brad Eaves has since inherited his grandfather’s tools (some of which are still used to this day) carrying on the family tradition.
Greg Eaves was born on O’ahu and raised on the Big Island of Hawai’i where he learned the trade of wood working from his father. Over the past 20 years, Greg has developed his skills and now is the fourth generation in a long line of master craftsmen. His koa wood products have been shown on television, featured in newspapers and magazines and can be found in fine island galleries.
Ancient Hawaiians were using the koa trunks to build waʻa (dugout outrigger canoes) and papa heʻe nalu (surfboards). The reddish wood is very similar in strength and weight to that of Black Walnut (Juglans nigra). Koa is often used in the construction of ukuleles, acoustic guitars, and Weissenborn-style Hawaiian steel guitars.
The koa population has suffered from grazing and logging. The largest koa grow in wet forest areas. Many of those have been logged out, though. Koa now comes largely from dead or dying trees or farms on private lands. Although formerly used for outrigger canoes, there are fewer any koa trees remaining that are large and straight enough to do so today.
In areas where cattle are present, because the seedlings are eaten, koa regeneration is almost completely suppressed. However, if the cattle are removed, koa are among the few native Hawaiian plants able to germinate in grassland. It can be instrumental in restoring native forest.
The dimensions listed in the ‘additional information’ table includes packing for shipment. The dimension listed on this page is correct for the bowl itself. Mahalo!