Take a Seat

Art Center presents exhibit of chairs

Hit hard by the pandemic, the Garrison Art Center, like many nonprofits, is coming up with creative ways to engage artists and art lovers.

The center’s most recent idea draws inspiration from Chair Show, an exhibit it mounted in 1987, during Tracy Strong’s tenure as director. Strong and another former director, Carinda Swann, are co-chairing (of course) an update, CHAIRS re-created.

James Murray describes his chair:

For many years, this oak block was in my studio in Martha’s Vineyard. The weighty block always sat next to my wood-burning stove, where I split scrap wood on it before feeding the fire — the only heat in my studio. I don’t keep chairs in my studio in an effort to stay productive, but I would find myself sitting on this splitting block.

One day I was breaking up an unsalvageable Windsor chair, and I saved this beautiful maple comb back. Later it occurred to me it was the perfect back for the splitting block. I particularly like mixing the heavy material with the light and graceful. My chair is very strong and surprisingly comfortable. And I couldn’t very well not include my splitting hatchet!

More than 50 chairs used as canvases by 44 artists are being auctioned and can be viewed online at garrisonartcenter.org or in person from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 11 to 14.

The Artists

John Allen, Justin Allen, Emil Alzamora, Marc Bernier, Emily Brown, Kit Burke-Smith, Chuck Burleigh, Peter Bynum, Diana Carulli, Renee Curci-Ivanoff, Tim D’Acquisto, Marylyn Dintenfass, Thomas Donahue, Susan English, Justin Feimer, Marcy B. Freedman, Barbara Smith Gioia, Kyra Hazou, Julie Heckert, Thomas Huber, Carla Rae Johnson, Irene Karlen, Grace Kennedy, Lisa Knaus, Martee Levi, Cecile Lindstedt, G Ray Mak, Sascha Mallon, Friedrike Merck, James Murray, Chantelle Norton, Irene O’Garden, Michael Piotrowski, Kim Pitt-Foster, Diana Polack, Hildreth Potts, Kelly Preusser, Sheila Rauch, Melissa Schlobohm, Ursula Schneider, Patricia Schories, Betty Stafford, Tracy Strong, Carinda Swann, Diana Vidal, Coulter Young

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