April 26 - August 11, 2019
Curated by Joey Yates
Reception: April 25th 6-8pm
A chair is a customary offering within our shared codes of polite behavior. For designers, it is a primary object for interpreting the intersection of function and aesthetics. In contemporary artistic practice it has become an indelible focus of creative inquiry for artists, working in a variety of media, who employ the chair for its ability to embody space, status, personal identity, memory, family history, and other aspects of our humanity. With arms, legs, a seat and a back, the chair can become a surrogate for the human body, reflecting the essence of a person and the lived experience.
In 1888 Vincent Van Gogh created a pair of paintings that attempted to personify his own studio chair, along with the favorite chair of his friend, artist Paul Gauguin. In 1912 Pablo Picasso helped introduce the element of collage into modern painting with his Still-Life with Chair Caning. Throughout the southern U.S. African-American neighborhoods have long been the site of a creative act known as Yard Work, an ornate form of outdoor display for everyday objects such as discarded tires, tools, cooking utensils, pipes and fan blades. Chairs often appear as a commemoration to a lost loved one, preparing a seat for their wandering spirit. This form of assemblage likely inspired the Texas artist Robert Rauschenberg to incorporate a chair into his work Pilgrim from 1960, an early example of one of his pivotal collage paintings that combined personal objects from his home and studio. In several paintings from Alice Neel the chair proved it can communicate the intimate interior worlds of her subjects. More recently, it was used to signify the more stately concerns of Kehinde Wiley's 2018 presidential portrait of Barack Obama.
The personification of the chair reaches beyond contemporary art into the wider culture, with such moments as the man vs. chair wrestling scene in the 1997 Harmony Korine film Gummo, or the speech by Clint Eastwood when, during his endorsement of Mitt Romney at the 2012 Republican National Convention, he made a rambling, improvised speech to an empty chair that was intended to represent a critical exchange with President Obama.
In The Hot Seat offers insight into how the chair is being continually reimagined in contemporary artistic practice. The exhibition combines artist-made chairs with sculptures, installations, paintings, and mixed media works by: Tanya Aguiñiga, Hawkins Bolden, Sarah Braman, Scott Burton, Alex Chitty, Jeremy Dean, The Haas Brothers , René Herbst, Lonnie Holley, Mika Horibuchi, Jessica Jackson Hutchins, David Iacovazzi-Pau, Chris Johanson, Donald Judd, Glenn Kaino, Barbara Kasten, Norman Kelley, Krueck + Sexton, Mateo López, Jonathan Muecke, Tejo Remy, Gerrit Rietveld, Aaron Skolnick, Travis Somerville, Simon Starling, KCJ Szwedzinski, Ole Ukena, Franz West, Robert Wilson, and Tobias Wong.
This show is supported by Leslie and James Millar; Jody and PA Howard; George and Linda Kurz; RJE Interiors, Genscape, and the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts
Thursday, January 12, 2017, 6-9 pm
Customs House Museum, (Planters Bank Peg Harvill
Gallery), Clarksville, TN,
January 3-29, 2017
Book Signing on Tues. August 13th, 6-7:30 PM at the Carnegie Center for Art & History.
Carnegie Center for Art and History, New Albany, IN, July 24 - September 26, 2015
Swanson Contemporary Gallery, Louisville, KY, November 6 - December 12, 2015
Patio Gallery, Louisville, KY, January 3 - February 9, 2016
Red Clay Survey Exhibition of Contemporary Southern Art
August 17 – October 26, 2014
Participation in this year Red Clay Survey. It is a major recurring regional competition sponsored by the Huntsville Museum of Art. The exhibition “takes the pulse” of contemporary Southern art every two years through a selection of work in all styles and media determined by a juror with strong national credentials. The exhibition recognizes and encourages excellence, and provides a permanent record of the development of regional art through the publication of a comprehensive digital catalogue. Works selected for the exhibition will be displayed in 5 galleries in the Museum’s elegant facility, located in Big Spring International Park in Downtown Huntsville.
November 1 - November 30, 2013
Reception for the Artist
Friday, November 1 2013, 6-9 pm
Performance Art by Douglas Lucas, 11 pm-8 am
SWANSON CONTEMPORARY GALLERY
638 East Market Street Louisville, KY 40202