Ross Johnston takes old sawblades, car springs, files and circular saws and turns them into objects of true beauty.
He sells them on the Nelson Market on Saturdays.
He finds wood from kauri tree roots that have been submerged in swamps for a century or more and crafts handles from them.
I have a small knife from a Holden car spring and a carving set that is immaculately balanced.
The carving fork negotiates a 90º transition from handle to prongs.
This is not craft.
This is pure art
PS I was there the other week (he always says “Haven’t seen you for a a while” which is invariably true) and there was an American hanging around, compalning about the fact that you couldn’t take the knives on planes.
“Of course you can” says Ross “You can even take them in the cabin up to Auckland and then you put them in your luggage. Of course, if you’re going via Los Angeles, there’s no point – they’ll steal them right out of your bag. They steal EVERYTHING there”
American drifts off, muttering.
“Probably a baggage loader from Los Angeles, Ross” I said…..