My name is David Sentesy. Born and raised in Dundas Ontario, my Grandfather introduced me to wood, teaching me about care for the living tree. My father introduced me to the precision and planning of an engineer. These skills powerfully shape my life and my life’s work.
I attended Carleton University from 1967 to 1971 and graduated with an arts degree in History and English. Following this I moved to Toronto to continue my studies. Before I finished school there, however, I realized that what I loved was working with wood in the science workshops at Carleton – building a harpsichord.
I followed my passion. I began accepting woodwork commissions and worked largely with hand tools. Learning how to shape wood by hand has fostered an incredible respect for power tools, but much more respect for the tree. In 1972 I married and moved to Ottawa where I worked with an Italian cabinetmaker. Several years later, when due to demand he began to build with particle board veneer and plastic laminates, I left him and moved to a homestead in the Ottawa valley. I set up my workshop next to my home.
My early experiences with wood shaped my desire to build with solid wood using traditional methods. Solid materials are not merely impressions of fine wood, like veneer. They are the real thing. The work that I do is in the line of the traditional Canadian master cabinetmakers.
Living in rural Ontario allows me to be near our sources of materials. Trees are a unique flora. They provide our planet with lungs and filters. They moderate climate, build soil, shelter life, and provide food. The way we work with them preserves their beauty and wholeness allowing us to feel their strength and patience.
I often seek the company of growing trees for spiritual nurture, balance of the soul and the emotional calm that has become increasingly necessary in our world.
I look forward to speaking with you.
– David Sentesy