Los Angeles-based studio furniture maker Andrew Riiska was introduced to his love of design and craft at a young age in Canton Connecticut. He was an apprentice in a design studio from age 11 to 18, until he moved to attend the University of Colorado. After graduating he relocated to NYC to open a woodshop in Brooklyn named Elshopo with partners Jaren Harbertson, now of Modern Union, and George Evageliou, of Urban Home Craft. During his time in NYC, he also taught wood working techniques at The Parsons New School of Design and founded Small Box Press which published hand made books that paired artists and writers to create short stories.
In 2005 Andrew moved to Downtown Los Angeles to start Riiska Design studio where he creates studio furniture with subjects as diverse as the body (as in his Belly Table), mythical creatures (Dragon Table,) or ephemerality (Bubble Table). He has been known to craft hundreds of little wooden boxes — each one encapsulating a single marshmallow. Using recycled wood, non-petrol-based finishing oils and a whimsical sense of humor, these and other works like the Bunk Bed Side Table and the Bubble Wrap Chair elegantly combine a “green” awareness of natural and found materials with the playful sensibility of their designer.
Dedicated to carrying on the tradition of his craft, Andrew has continued to teach over the years in well known craft and design schools such as The Southern California Institute of Architecture in Downtown Los Angeles and The Anderson Ranch Arts Center in Aspen Colorado.