Witco Pulaski, also known as William Westenhaver, was a furniture designer from the mid-20th century who created unique pieces that were very popular in their time and remain so to this day. His style was heavily influenced by the Tiki culture that was popular in the 1950s and 1960s, as well as by the popular mid-century modern design aesthetic.
Pulaski’s most valued pieces are known for their elaborate carvings and use of exotic woods. His furniture was often designed to resemble tiki motifs, with intricate carving and sculptural elements in the legs and support structures. One of his most famous pieces is the Witco Bar that was produced in the 1960s. The piece is made from teak wood and features carvings of various tiki images, including faces and masks.
Another valued piece by Pulaski is the Witco Sunburst chair. This chair is made from a combination of teak, walnut, and oak wood and features a sunburst motif on the backrest. The chair’s sturdy and robust construction, combined with its unique design, makes it a highly sought-after piece among vintage furniture collectors.
In addition to his furniture designs, Pulaski also created a selection of decorative objects and accessories. These include lamps, carvings, and wall hangings, many of which also incorporate tiki-themed designs. Pulaski’s lamp designs, in particular, are highly valued, with pieces such as the Witco Starburst Lamp and the Witco Tiki Lamp both highly prized by collectors.
Despite its popularity, the Witco label eventually fell out of favor, and the company ceased production in the 1970s. However, in recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in Mid-century and Tiki design aesthetics, and this has led to a renewed interest in the designs of Witco Pulaski. Today, collectors can find replicas of some of Pulaski’s most valued pieces, as well as authentic vintage pieces at select furniture retailers and in online marketplaces.
In conclusion, Witco Pulaski’s furniture designs and decorative objects remain some of the most iconic and valuable pieces of mid-century Tiki design. With their unique and elaborate carvings and use of exotic woods, Pulaski’s furniture and decorative objects continue to inspire collectors and designers, and remain an important part of mid-century modern design history.