Fine Furniture, Art & Sculpture

Nothing is of any value excepting that which you create for yourself, no joy is joy save as it is the joy of self expression.


Working with wood over the past 30 years has been an extraordinary experience. ?There is a level of satisfaction which one brushes shoulders with, that I suspect is shared by the farmer. Working “hands on” with the earth can be a humbling, gratifying & exhilarating experience.

Many of my pieces include found objects that have been reassigned new roles to finish out their days in aesthetic service, whether as a pull or some visual detail.

I am fascinated by the rich veins of texture and design that can be salvaged from discarded farm machinery. The juxtaposition of pitted metal and wood always brings a satisfying visual experience.

About Me

John Hatlestad was born and raised in northern Minnesota. He started building as a child, creating toys and play spaces from objects found in the woods and around the lake that fronted his family’s cottage. After studying art and teaching briefly, Hatlestad began the process of teaching himself the art of furniture construction and design. He started with custom cabinetry, and his work has evolved into one-of-a-kind pieces of furniture, functional sculpture, and decorative arts pieces.

Hatlestad’s original compositions reinvent the purpose and extend the legacy of natural and man-made found objects whose time of beauty and utility were thought to ?have come and gone, recycling them by incorporating them into one-of-a-kind furniture pieces.

Hatlestad’s work has been featured in galleries including Hesperidian Gallery, Lake County Fine Arts, Prairie Arts and Fibers, Chicago Mosaic School, The Aesthetic Eye, Citywoods, and Lubeznik Center for the Arts. He is a member of the Chicago Furniture Designers Association.

Contact Me

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