Designed and Manufactured by Vivian Beer (b. 1977), Penland, NC, Current, 2004; Photo by Douglas J. Eng
Designed and Manufactured by Vivian Beer (b. 1977), Penland, NC, Current, 2004; Photo by Douglas J. Eng

Though Plato demanded we stand up straight as possible to establish our intellectual separation from the baser desires of appetite and reproduction, he no doubt said it, like all good philosophers, while sitting down.

Much to the dismay of many a chiropractor, Americans spend on average about nine hours a day sitting?  No mystery then that we take our chairs seriously, but we don’t often think of them as works of art. Artists of all kinds do and the Joslyn Art Museum is featuring a grand exhibition of 40 of the ultimate in sitting/seating on display until Sept. 8.

The Art of Seating: 200 Years of American Designis now in full swing at the Joslyn. The exhibit of 40 pieces is from the Jacobsen Collection of American Art, and was organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Jacksonville, Florida.

The exhibit treats the chair not only as an everyday item but as functional sculpture; each of the forty chairs in the exhibition reflect important artistic, social, economic, political and cultural influences.

The show features from the  functional and modest to the creative and futuristic, from early 19thcentury to currently contemporary. Chair designers include Noguchi and Saarinen, Eames and Bertoia, just to drop a few names. Examples vary from Asian-influences to Mid-century Modern, often mimicking associated architectural trends.

The Art of Seating: 200 Years of American Designis a ticketed show; there is an entry fee for non-Museum members. Please check the Museum website for ticket prices at joslyn.org or call 402-342-3300.


Subscribe to The Reader Newsletter

Our awesome email newsletter briefing tells you everything you need to know about what’s going on in Omaha. Delivered to your inbox every day at 11:00am.

Become a Supporting Member

Subscribe to thereader.com and become a supporting member to keep locally owned news alive. We need to pay writers, so you can read even more. We won’t waste your time, our news will focus, as it always has, on the stories other media miss and a cultural community — from arts to foods to local independent business — that defines us. Please support your locally-owned news media by becoming a member today.

Leave a comment