My Favourite Wooden Object

A Mahogany tree fruit

Anna Liu

The most beautiful wooden object I have is not an object: it is a Mahogany tree fruit with its seeds still inside. It looks and feels like wood, and is warm to touch.

In our home-studio we collect objects from nature: seeds, shells, twigs and leaves. In terms of  the things we use, we like things that we have made ourselves, or super functional objects that serve the daily rituals of washing, cooking, eating, sleeping.

This fruit was given to me by an elderly couple in Tainan, Taiwan, who run a place called the Qianqi Seed Museum. They collect seeds that have fallen from trees and lovingly sort them, sharing their love of their field with visitors. To enter their place is to enter a wonderland.

I love it because it is not an object – it is part of nature, a story about time. When you look at how it is structured on the inside, you can see the most fantastical design of dense seed formations, packaged in protective layers in five perfect sections. The fruit is designed to float on seawater, before landing when conditions are suitable and releasing its seeds.

Anna Liu, Director, Tonkin Liu