Bateau Imaginaire – Chair Installation by Franz West and Heimo Zobernig
In 2014 I visited the Belgian city Oostende (Ostend) for an exhibition “The Sea” which was curated mainly by the Ghent curator Jan Hoet, who unfortunately died before the exhibition opened and made the other instigators decide to make the exhibition a tribute to Jan Hoet
Rachel Spence says in The Finacial Times about Franz West:
Franz West is often described as the arch joker in a pack of late 20th-century sculptors known for their irreverent cornucopias of materials.
…High quality global journalism requires investment.
West’s profferings – zany, bulbous sculptures, kinky collages and funky furniture that he encouraged spectators to sit on – labelled him a cheeky Lord of Misrule. He would bring art to the masses yet make them chuckle too.
I never found him that funny. His squidgy, effervescent, papier-mâché efflorations sent shivers up my spine, as did his collages of fashion, porn and newspaper images. His invitations to perch on the sofas and chairs felt like commandments: thou shalt giggle; thou shalt chill out.
West never denied that his humour sprang from dark sources. Born in Vienna in 1947, he grew up in a city lacerated by its war record. He remembered playing in filthy, debris-littered streets where virtually all the residents had been Nazis. His own parents were communists, Jewish on his mother’s side.
It all started with the Bondage Chair by Allen Jones.
Which chair had to be remade by Bjarne Melgaard.
Last year the virtual world exploded when Russian socialite, fashionista and art collector Dasha Zhukova (married to Roman Abramowich) was pictured on Bjarne Melgaard’s version for an interview with Russian buro 24/7/. It was published on the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. which was wideley misunderstood and critisized on the internet. See for instance the Hollywood Reporter.
According to Art Info:
Melgaard and his dealer, Gavin Brown, are taking a different tack. In a statement sent to ARTINFO today, the pair called the photo of Zhukova “extraordinary” and said they “applaud both the sitter and the seated.” The duo goes on to say, “To fault the sitter, now in the age of the Anthroposcene, in the midst of extraordinary and REAL obscenities that threaten our actual existence, reflects a civilization that is not dying but already dead.”
The Urban wrote about a photoshoot for the Sir NY spring collection with an answer to the Melgaard chair.
And Pierluigi Vecchi linked me to a male white and male black models photo as an answer.
Finally hmvm mentioned the Proportion London with Rick Owens male model submitting himself as a model for a chair. This may close the (chair)gate…
Not entirely. As I discovered this comical cartoon by Dutch Cartoonist Ruben Oppenheimer:
Putin seated on Rutte, the Dutch prime minister. “Citius Altius Fortius” is Latin for “Faster, Higher, Stronger”.
Green Chair Sculpture
Found this armchair Sculpture in The Hague where I live. Will give you more details whenever I find them.
Thonet Balloon Rocker by Hester Oerlemans
Before I post my next post I want to feature this chair installation by Hester Oerlemans.