Steve formally trained as a sculptor in the ‘60s and taught
for many years. He began to make furniture 12 years ago and has
been working professionally for the past 8 years. Steve's fine
art background enables him to approach furniture design and construction
without the usual conventions of tradition and with a free spirit.
Much of Steve's inspiration comes from four main sources:- the agricultural
past and rural debris; Irish country furniture; East European folk
art; and things made by the ‘unskilled’ out of resourceful necessity.
His strength as a maker is in the reinvention of uses for abandoned
In Steve's core work he is a bucolic dreamer and visionary
rooted in hedge bottoms, the forgotten corners of barns and lofts,
the rising moon and the steaming nostrils of yarded beast in winter.
Each 'Steve Handley' piece is different, most say unusual and
all are carefully handcrafted from old timber and much of the decoration
added to his tables, chairs and cupboards are rare gems from a bygon
age sourced over the years by Steve.
Although termed 'furniture' it is much more than that.
Steve is well known for his wit as many of you know from meeting
him on his stand at the many fairs and exhibitions he has attended.
His passion for the country and the old farming ways comes through
in many of his pieces. They can be inscribed visibly with on of
his own poetic rhymes or a special message straight from the heart
maybe tucked away somewhere out of sight.