I’ve always liked chairs. From a structural point of view, the chair divides space into interesting positive and negative patterns. It’s something that has always intrigued me.
Who doesn’t relate to a chair in some fashion? We all have at least one favorite. Perhaps, one for reading and another for watching TV. We can often identify a person by their favorite chair. I have a small wing chair that belonged to my great-grandmother. And I always envision my father in a simple office chair or a straight back wood farm table chair.
Chairs have personalities just like people, so it’s not surprising the chair’s structure is named after the physical characteristics of the human form. Chairs have seats, backs, arms, legs and feet. They also have shoulders and knees, and some even have knuckles and toes. A few might even have faces.
Because of the intimate relationship between chairs and people, there is a long history of using the chair as a metaphor for much of the human condition, particularly the “empty” chair. Loss or absence on the one hand and anticipation or welcome on the other are rich themes to mine. What a wealth of possibilities to explore!
If you are looking for inspiration, then look no further than your own interests. Consider fleshing them out by experimenting with different approaches and mediums. No matter your discipline — writer, dancer, or visual artist — this is a great way to explore a theme. So go for it!