One Word Photo Challenge – Mahogany

Here is my entry for this week’s One Word Photo Challenge – Mahogany, though it is not so much about the color Mahogany as it is about the species of wood.

This is a furniture piece by woodworker/artist Wendell Castle that can be found at the Renwick Gallery in Washington DC, part of the Smithsonian, called Ghost Clock.


Though it appears to be a grandfather clock covered by a white muslin sheet with a rope tied around it, Ghost Clock is actually a piece of art done in the Trompe L’œil style, which is French for Deceive the Eye.

Despite what you think you see, upon closer examination the viewer discovers that this piece is actually an intricate carving made from one solid piece of laminated Mahogany.


How can that be when it seems to be made from material of two different colors?

Well the sheet portion has been bleached to give it that pale appearance, but it really is made from one solid piece of wood.


The attention to detail in the folds and creases in the sheet is truly impressive.  You really have to get up-close to realize that what you’re looking at is not what you think it is.


The Renwick is currently closed for renovations so unfortunately for those who’d like to see this piece in person, you’ll have to wait until 2016.

In the meantime you’ll find lots more pictures and info about it online.

As always, thanks for looking 🙂


About Norm 3.0

World’s youngest grumpy old man & heart failure wonder boy. Interests: writing, woodworking, photography, travel, tennis, wine, and I know a bit about power tools.
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13 Responses to One Word Photo Challenge – Mahogany

  1. Pingback: One Word Photo Challenge: Lemon | Jennifer Nichole Wells

  2. restlessjo says:

    How very clever! Woodwork must be a very satisfying hobby, Norm. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      Yes, it’s a great way to relax and unclutter the mind.
      I don’t spend as much time in the shop as I’d like and I’m starting to think that it’s time I do something about that.
      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. reocochran says:

    This example of sculpture is intriguing and awesome, Norm. It suits the one word photo challenge but gets a lot of interesting questions and thoughts going. Just perfect to make you want to know more about this Wendell’s other artworks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      I’ve seen a few of his other pieces but I’m not super familiar with his work. a lot seems to be done in the same style. Some are extremely ambitious and very well-done.
      Some folks just have that gift.
      Thanks for stopping in 🙂


  4. Dee Clark says:

    How interesting. Very good choice for the challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Really amazing. I still don’t believe that is one piece of wood! Thank you for the capture and for opening my eyes!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is really amazing. Until your last picture I was still questioning what you were saying – it looks so much like a real piece of fabric (and the only thing that gives it away in the close up is the string). Thank you so much for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow, this is amazing. Things aren’t always what they seem to be. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      As an avid amateur woodworker I had heard about this piece long before I got to see it.
      It was amazing to discover that even though I knew what I was looking, it really really looks like something else.
      A sign of exceptionally good art I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

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