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I live in the middle of Dartmoor, as you can get. My favourite view is about fifteen minutes from home on my way to work. Having dealt with the morning rush hour of Belted Galloway cattle, Dartmoor ponies and errant White-faced Dartmoor sheep, I come to some open moor, where I can get some reception on my phone and park up. More often than not, no Starbucks being available, I have brought my mug of coffee from home with me and with the first and only pleasurable cigarette of the day, I start my business calls, preferably to someone struggling through traffic in London. From my vantage point on the edge of Dartmoor, I gaze out to the south, a residual red glow from the sun, risen in the east and with at this time of year, mist curling up the river valleys from the sea, while I prepare for my descent into humanity.

My other favourite view is from the Embankment, later in the evening, so one can actually drive. Preferably after some rain, so the lights from cars glisten and glitter, the Thames nearing high tide so that it feels almost level with the road, and the glory of those buildings new and old from Big Ben the Houses of Parliament, The London Eye, heading East towards the city. It provides all the visual thrills, the glamour, the colour that other sense of being alive to counterpoint the bliss of a Dartmoor morning.

As a child my parent’s idea of an outing on a Saturday afternoon was to go round snooping in antique shops in the days when you could still find genuine antiques, and even the odd bargain. I tolerated their enthusiasm, but exacted a high price in sweets, ice creams and the like. However, despite my view being compromised by the chocolate flake in my 99 ice cream, I think I must have developed an 'eye', and will always fall for the simple elegance of a Georgian armchair. Minimalist and modern in the importance paid to proportion and the way in which material is used.

In contrast my training as a carver and guilder introduced to me to the wonder of Grinling Gibbons and his miraculously carved Cornucopias. As far removed from the minimal and modern, but thrilling in their execution.

One of my favourite interiors has to be that of the Soane Museum, in Lincolns Inn Fields or thereabouts, with its collection of period artefacts and extraordinary use of concealed natural lighting. The furniture of Eileen Gray and her collaboration on the building e-1027 with Jean Badovici. Hardly seems possible that it could have been designed in 1920. The furniture of Maarten Blas; his Clay collection which seems to capture an essence of a chair or a stool with the sense of it still being made. Ron Arad his 1981 Rover Chair now seen on Top Gear, which seemed so extraordinary when it first appeared. The buildings and furniture of Frank Gehry from the titanium Guggenheim to the cardboard Wiggle chair.

Anonymous joiners and carpenters whose works grace so many extraordinary buildings, from medieval Oak Crook barns, to 18th Century panelled libraries, to my local Lutyens castle, Castle Drogo.

Notes to Editors:
Matthew King is a furniture designer and craftsman based in Devon where he runs the Woodbury Furniture Company which specialises in creating truly unique interiors including kitchens, libraries, music rooms and freestanding furniture designs.

For press information and images contact Sharon Finnigan Kilby at Arthouse PR
t: 01363 777002; e: info@arthouse-pr.com; www.arthouse-pr.com

Woodbury Furniture Company
t: 01392 363600; www.woodburyfurniture.co.uk

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