Genetologic Research – Biomimetic Chair

Traditional Chinese Chair in Marble by Ai Weiwei
Ha and from one thing usually comes another thing: Google found me this marble reincarnation of what is actually an antique Chinese design….

“The marble chair is made from a solid piece of a stone into a chair, into something which ironically overthrew the idea of the wooden classic chair. The work as one piece is strongly against its own form, its own way of structure. In the kind of making it really dismisses its own meaning. I enjoy that part.”

A traditional Chinese Chair by no one less than Chinese artist Ai Weiwei in marble

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Ming Dynasty Double Circle Couch Bed

Ming Dynasty Circle Couch Bed

A Ming Dynasty Huanghuali Wood Couch Bed with Round Legs and Double Circle Ornamental Design

Overall Height: 30.5 in (77.5 cm), Platform Height: 21.5 in (55 cm), Length: 82.25 in (209 cm), Depth: 41.75 in (106 cm), Circa 1600-1675

Published in the Journal of of the Classical Chinese Furniture Society, Winter 1991, p. 17, in Dr. Sarah Handler’s monograph on couch beds-“Comfort and Joy: A Couch Bed for Day and Night”.

Compare with a zitan wood round legged couch bed in Wang Shixiang’s Classic Chinese Furniture, 1986, pl. 122, p. 183, which has plain ornamental struts and a single waist molding surrounding the platform frame. In our exhibit, the solid back panel of beautifully grained huanghuali wood and dual waist moldings, combined with double circle motifs, give this bed a perfectly proportioned and restrained elegance.

Ming Dynasty Double Circle Couch Bed

Ming/Qing Dynasty Southern Official’s Hat Armchair

Ming Qing Dinasty Chines hat chair

Like I said. This is one of the items I found in the book….

A Late Ming or Early Qing Dynasty Huanghuali Wood Southern Official’s Hat Armchair with a Bow-Curved Backrest and Carved Medallion

Overall Height:40.4 in (102.5 cm), Dimensions of Seat-Height: 21 in (53 cm), Width: 23.25 in (59 cm), Depth: 18.75 in (47.5 cm), Circa 1620-1735.

A huanghuali armchair of identical form and color, but a taller S-shaped backrest, can be found in Wang Shixiang’s Classic Chinese Furniture, Plate 48.

A perceptive analysis of Southern Official’s Hat Armchair can be found in the commentary on Plate 82 of Chinese Household Furniture by George Kates: “Many square-backed chairs do not have official’s cap projections; the uprights of the back are smoothly merged in one continuous line with the top rail, leaving a slight depression in the center, at the top of the splat, to accommodate the nape of the neck. This is managed with such ease that the effect is almost as if the the wood had grown in this way;the whole plane of the upper part of the back is bent slightly backward, and the arms, too, are gently curved to accommodate the human figure. When a numberof such refinements are united, the result is a civilized piece of furniture, the general effect is only emphasized by the use of highly polished hardwood, wth just enough irregularity of the grain showing through the finish to add interest.”

Ming/Qing Dynasty Southern Official’s Hat Armchair

Chinese and Korean Antique Furnitures

Ming Dynasty Antique Chinese Folding Chair

Until yesterday, I used to believe, ignorant as I was, the Chinese, like the Japanese used to sit on the floor or on futons. Not true at all! I discovered a book about antique Ming Dynasty furniture among which wooden chairs with delicious design. From that eureka (actually it is heureka) moment it is one step to do a proper Google…..You will be seeing much more of this here in the near future.

Happy New Year by the way!