“Stairway to heaven”

By Jan-Carel Koster

Stairway to heaven

This wooden sculpture with a beautiful title was made by Jan-Carel in an almost 4 meter high ‘Nordmann’. That is a coniferous tree species. Everyone knows this tree as a Christmas tree that everyone has in their home nowadays. This trunk is only slightly larger. And according to Jan-Carel, this type of pine works very well. The wood gives a beautiful structure and is not that hard to carve.

Technical Information

Material:  Nordmann Fir
Origins:  The Netherlands
Height:  350 cm

The origins of the design
A frequently asked question to Jan-Carel is how such a wooden sculpture is created? Does this happen during the sculpting process? Or is it already clear in advance what it will be? The answer to this question is often the same, namely: Jan-Carel almost always has a complete picture in his head beforehand. With assignments he only feels more obliged to stick to the sketch made than with an autonomous (free) assignment. The client regularly says that he has the freedom to follow his own insights. And that’s a good thing, because it certainly benefits the sculpture!

The idea

When the idea is born, Jan-Carel works it out in his mind, often in great detail. He then describes his concept on paper and follows the sketch to show his potential client what the sculpture will look like. Of course, this sketch usually deviates slightly because the artwork is made from a natural product. You can always come across anything there. And whether this is in wood or stone, both are unpredictable. Of course, you can check in advance for fracture lines in stone and any rotten spots in wood. Yet this remains an uncertain factor.

The sculpting process

Making a wooden sculpture starts with placing the material. In this case the large trunk of almost 4 meters high and 60-70 cm in diameter. After this, in this case, scaffolding is built around it so that a stable place is created for sculpting at any height. In this case, Jan-Carel first starts with the chainsaw, sawing off the large pieces. But he soon picks up the hammer and chisel because this gives him a better feel for the material. He likes this because it puts him in a ‘trance’ in which time seems to stand still. And occasionally when I look back, this seems to be the case. because if you let him do his thing for an hour, it will look as if he has removed large pieces with the chainsaw instead of the chisel.


Are you interested in having a bespoke artwork made for you? There is a wide variety of possibilities, from type of wood used, dimensions and personalizations. Don’t hesitate to reach out to Jan-Carel to find out what’s possible.

Beeldhouwer Jan-Carel Koster _ Wash-Basin 5


Jan-Carel Koster

Switch over to

Jan-Carel Koster 

Applied Art