About Leonard Fieber – Beaver Chew Furniture – Contemporary Rustic

Leonard Fieber

Artist Statement

Working with wood, carving, and building functional, one-of-a-kind items has been my creative outlet for the past 40 years.  My father taught me the skills he learned from his father who was a cabinet maker.  I also learned to be patient and to construct a well made and beautiful piece of furniture.  “My love of the outdoors and the materials found there, have led me to use beaver sticks for my latest work.  “A hand constructed, original furniture item in your home can only enhance your comfort, and provide your space with a connection to nature.”

Beaver Chew Furniture is a collaboration between the beaver and me with thanks for design advice from my wife, Martha.  The newly found objects left by the beaver have been an inspiration for me.

“Many works actually begin in the canoe in some remote area of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.  As I collect the sticks, I am visualizing how they will create my next piece.”

Furniture Building Methods and Process

Contemporary, rustic furniture made from the wood the beaver leaves when it is finished chewing the bark off.   Woods used are aspen, maple, and pine.  I use saddle joints, tenons, and dowels in constructing my furniture.

Because each piece of wood is different in shape, my works are one of a kind art pieces.

Table Tops – Kiln dried pine with five coats of modified waterborne urethane finish with an anti-yellowing agent.

Table Frames – Aspen family of woods, with two coats of modified waterborne urethane finish with an anti-yellowing agent.

All Seating Frames – Aspen Family of woods with hard maple or beech rungs and two coats of modified waterborne urethane finish with an anti-yellowing agent.

Construction Methods – Tenons, wood dowels, saddle joints, and mechanical fasteners with the use of polyurethane and PVA Glues.

Resume of Exhibits and Awards:

  • 2015 Best in Wood – Art on the Rocks, Marquette, MI
  • 2014 Best in Furniture – Art on the Rocks, Marquette, MI
  • 2012 Best in Furniture – Art on the Rocks, Marquette, MI
  • North of the Bridge – Crooked Tree Art Center – Petoskey, MI – May thru August  2010
  • “500 Tables”  Published by Lark Books – May 2009
  • Style West – Buffalo Bill Historical Art Center, Cody, WY – Sept. 25-27th 2008
  • Adirondack Museum Rustic Fair, Blue Mountain Lake, NY – 2006-07 and 2012.  “Most Original Design” Award in 2007
  • Studio Furniture Show” at the Crooked Tree Arts Center in Petoskey, Michigan,  August 3rd thru September 17th, 2005
  • Artists of the U.P.”, at the Devos Museum, Marquette, Michigan,  May 24, thru June 25th 2005
  • “Northern Exposures” at the William Bonifas Fine Art Center, Escanaba, Michigan 2003 thru 2005
  • “From and About Nature” Two-person exhibit with my wife Martha, a fiber artist, at Riverfront Art Center, Stevens Point, Wisconsin.  April 2nd thru May 16th 2004
  • SOFA, Chicago, Ill 2003 and 2004
  • Leelanau Furniture Show, Traverse City, MI, October 2004



  • Furniture Design and Construction – Self Taught
  • Mohawk Finishes – Amsterdam, New York – Workshops in furniture touch-up 1984, 1985, 1986
  • Woodcarving – Northeast Wisconsin Technical College
  • Wisconsin State Apprenticeship Program – Racine, WI – Wisconsin Indentured Apprenticeship in Meat Cutting
  • Milwaukee Institute of Technology – Milwaukee, WI – Automotive Technology

Other Woodworking Activities

  • Woodcarving