The wooden birds are based on the form and colouring of toucans, hummingbirds and Mexican quetzals – chosen for their bright, contrasting feathers.
Hernández used computer-numerically-controlled (CNC) technology to mill soft, continuous wooden shapes that replicate the structure of the birds' bodies. Exaggerated tubes form tails, while slender spikes make for beaks.
The designer then developed an experimental painting technique that immersed sections of the wood in coloured water. This allowed Hernández to create overlapping and contrasting layers of colour, and play with transparency – leaving the grain of the wood visible beneath the dye.
London design studio Raw Edges used a similar dipping technique for a set of furniture that had zigzag coloured patterns, created by placing pieces of wood in angled buckets of colour.
The depth of colour and the gradient of different shades is changed by how long the wood is immersed for, and the position it's held in.
"This way, the birds acquire a duality where handmade and machine-made complement each other, resulting in three decorative figures," said the designer, who has exhibited his work around the world.
Colombian artist Diana Beltran Herrera used paper instead of wood to recreate birds' plumage, using thousands of intricately cut and curled strands as feathers.
Other bird-related design comes in the form of Jaime Hayón's Cassina bird, which was made from wood taken from a paulownia tree planted by architect Le Corbusier at his Villa le Lac.
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