Dr. Lambert Shumbusho is the Leader in modern organic design in West Africa. Shumbusho Design Art Furniture collection comprises distinctive and original art-furniture passionately hand carved by the artist himself from fallen tree trunks, unearthed roots, and branches of hardwood (his trademark is the sacred Iroko Tree or Oba Igi (King of Wood in Yoruba language) found at the riverbanks and swamps of the West African coast.
The artist selects each piece with great care searching for pieces which reveal the inner beauty and the enduring strength of nature enshrined within it and convey to the artist structures and mysterious shapes which fire his creative mind. These may be tree trunks left behind by local loggers, roots with harmonious forms, abandoned railway sleepers with cracks, holes and burn marks, all of which uniquely reflect the warmth and enduring beauty of wood which over almost two centuries gradually has been weathered by the natural forces. When these wooden pieces and fragments are seen for the first time by the artist they immediately kindle and inspire his artistic thought.
A Harvard trained Petroleum lawyer by profession, Lambert is an autodidact artist who began developing his designs over twenty years based on his observation of the inhabitants of Niger Delta, the general disregard of people for the natural environment, the inexhaustible potential offered by nature in West Africa, and the mysterious beauty of these discarded and unwanted natural fragments. His journey began when he first noticed how the local fishermen canoeing on many rivers of the Niger Delta systematically cut down the primitive forests by the riverbanks to make charcoal and to sell the wood in the local market in order to supplement their meager earnings. In the harvesting process, they cut down trees without any consideration to the damage their action does to their natural surroundings. Non professional loggers leave behind damaged tree trunks, sometimes burning down the trees in order to collect charcoal on a large scale. Originally the artist was first inspired by befriending the elder Ijaw fishermen who accepted to show him the waste and devastation left behind by the cutting of hardwood, especially rare species such as Iroko, Ewu, okoliko, Eki and Okepe. In the hollowed out and burnt down trees and discarded hardwood, he first saw the hidden beauty and the unique characteristics of these trees.
His intense passion for these pieces made him first a collector of sea weathered and sun-bleached driftwood before he had found the hidden beauty of the ancient hardwood fished out from the muddy waters. In his designs, Lambert is animated by one principle: to preserve and thus to convey the natural beauty of hardwood. The artist strives to keep the uniqueness and dignity of each individual wood structure in its original form, color and texture. He respects the unique character of each piece which at the first glance in their raw and rough state may even convey bizarre forms. They stir his imagination. He is aware of a singular personality to each piece and senses nature’s will to survive, and to continue to exist in the face of the ravages of time and man’s lack of reverence for the natural environment.
Dr. Lambert Shumbusho creates distinctive masterpieces that radiate the warmth and mystery of Africa and the weathered character, features, structures and shapes typical of Africa’s harsh and unforgiving environment. Each piece is created for a purpose: to preserve Africa’s rapidly diminishing resources and to offer people everywhere a functional art, preserving the heritage of Africa. Each work is hand finished and naturally polished to bring out the rare beauty of a piece of wood.