Chainsaw Artist Installs Owls

chainsaw owls

Instead of using a paint brush to create something, artist Jacob Lucas uses a chainsaw to transform hunks of wood into beautiful creations. Usually working from his home studio in Bonney Lake, Lucas packed up log blocks and chainsaws and spent the day on the Overlake campus last week. With the buzz of the chainsaw coming from the commons area between the Red Art Barn and Fulton Performing Arts Center, Overlake students and staffers marveled at the delicate and dangerous work that Lucas creates from a block of wood. “I find that when people want a chainsaw sculpture, they don’t want it to be perfect,” says Lucas. “They want it to look like it was done with a chainsaw because it was done by what many consider to be a crude tool.”

Smelling of a gas and oil mixture as well as sawdust, Lucas shared his story and artistry to dozens of Overlake students in our visual arts programs. Overlake’s Expert in Residence Fund was able to bring Lucas to our campus and make the six sculptures. On the day he was here, he was able to get a good start on two of them which he will finish in his studio. “It was a goal for us when C (Art teacher Caroline Jaap) and I first met that we wanted something that was going to be here for a while,” explains Bob Bristol. “It’s not only honoring our 50th anniversary, but it’s something that, down-the-line, we can add to over years.”

Lucas uses a variety of chainsaws worth thousands of dollars that he’s acquired from around the world. He frequently attends international competitions, but his artwork is so in demand that he prefers to stay close to home. Using redwood and cedar his work stands the test of time, and he insists that with proper installation, his owls will be enjoyed by Overlakers for decades.

Click here to see Lucas at work on our campus, and click here for a look of him installing his creations in various locations around Overlake on March 2, 2018.