Borrowed Chair by Theresa Harmanen
Can a chair be a memoir of a time that should remain in the past? Can a chair raise emotion and make us think?
My overall aim for this project is to create objects and stories commenting or interpreting chapters from the book Plan B 4.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilisation by Lester R. Brown. The book investigates the challenges of our time when it comes to environmental and societal issues but also suggests solutions or ‘responses’ to those challenges. BORROWED is a comment to the following quote from the same book ‘..humanity’s collective demands first surpassed the earth’s regenerative capacity around 1980.’. The famous quote There are professions more harmful than industrial design, but very few of them, from designer and environmental advocate Victor Papanek, has also been one of the main inspirations for this project.
BORROWED explores our choices as humans as well as creative professionals through emotional and reflective aspects in an everyday object. Silhouettes of famous designer chairs from the year 1980 until today are combined as a symbol of our choices, our collective demands, and of our borrowed time. The chair consists of 16 shadow side profiles from chairs such as the ‘Concrete chair’ by Jonas Bolin, ‘Chair One’ by Konstantin Grcic, Jasper Morrison’s ‘Plywood Chair’ and Philippe Starck’s ‘Olly Tango’ to mention a few. The chairs are chosen as icons of our professions and the time that they reflect. The chair consists of solid birch wood and is painted with an environmentally friendly stain.