Weathered cypress boards from long gone giants; barn doors with years of paint showing through; barbed wire twisted by hand, now rusty…these are the things that capture the imagination of artist Don Brasseaux as he travels the roads of his native Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. Don’s interest in these old materials, and his ability to see potential beauty where others might see only candidates for the scrap heap, can be traced to his upbringing in the Cajun society of the 1950’s. Though much of the country was turning to plastic and prefab during this era, Don’s family still believed that functional items could be made artistically and that something of quality should not be thrown away. Theirs was a self-sufficient lifestyle in which many, household items were handmade, creativity and hard work were highly valued, and a resistance to the throwaway culture sprouting up around them was strong.
As Don’s desire to express himself began to grow in the early 1960’s, he turned to the ways of his upbringings for inspiration. He began salvaging old Cypress lumber, previously destined to burn or rot, and used it to design benches pleasing to both the eye and body. Through the crafting of these artistic pieces of furniture, Don found a creative outlet which has grown with him over the years. He has expanded on this woodworking foundation to create glass-top tables made from old doors and windows, hutches utilizing sections of old tin ceilings as doors, unique and versatile chest, wine racks, old-style armoires, etc. Because his materials are from the living breathing countryside of Louisiana, all his creations are one of a kind. Since he never uses any standardized materials or forms, designs customized to a patron’s particular needs come naturally to him.
Though always striving for balance between expression and function, Don followed his more artistic inclinations when creating barbed wire wreaths and crosses that have become some of his most well received works. A combination of graceful lines, rugged materials, and innovation within a familiar form gives these pieces a wide-ranging appeal. Don’s barbed wire wreaths, for example, have drawn so much attention that they were featured in an exhibit entitled The Wreath: Interpretations at The Arsenal Gallery, New York City, 1996.
Much of Don Brasseaux’s works have met with commercial and private success. Restaurants such as Tsunami in Lafayette, Louisiana, and Café Des Amis in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, made use of his talents in outfitting their establishments. The Nature Conservancy also uses Don’s furniture, as does the Maison Des Amis in Breaux Bridge. Privately, Don has sold works to clients as far away as California, Texas, New York, Connecticut, South Carolina and Rhode Island.
In short, Don Brasseaux is an artist whose solid roots in Cajun Louisiana provided him with the materials, skill and sense of expression he needed to begin the creative journey. Since those first steps, his personal talent, commitment and unique vision have carried him to a place of high artistic achievement. The results of his journey can be seen in the fine furniture and artwork which Don continues to produce on a regular basis.
The following pages on this site are not intended to be a catalogue of available items, but rather a gallery of my past work to be used as a visual reference of my range and style.
Shop Phone 337-332-5517
Cell Phone 337-278-5413