This beautiful piece of wood was sourced from a beech tree on the ridgeway in Goring at the nature reserve I manage. Due to a fork in the tree developing decay it had been cause for concern and needed to be cut down. The crowns from both side of the fork were felled leaving a decent sized pole of deadwood to benefit the habitat. When beech wood, in particular, is left on the ground to season out in the elements it naturally starts to develop obvious mycological activity, the intricate line patterns seen covering the form are the result of competing fungal hyphae coursing through the timber and laying down boundaries to defend the territory they occupy. Xylaria polymorpha and Trametes versicolor are active within this timber and as they consume the nutrients within the wood they bleach the wood in their wake. When shaping the outside of this piece I stopped half way to remount it, the large white mottled zone accompanied by the high frequency of melanistic plates made the form look like a map, it was only fitting for the bleached region to sit firmly at the north. This piece was finished with several coats of lacquer to give it a fine shine then buffed with a home made beeswax polish.