This is a painting of a chair in our house.
Over a month ago, I began painting objects found around my house. (And I also intended to post them all and weekend links every weekend but then a few projects had me running in a different direction.)
But back to the chair.
About 15 years ago, my husband and I saw this chair on the side of the road. I spotted it and yelled, “Stop the car!” scaring the bejeezus out of Ever-Patient, and almost getting rear-ended. I jumped out of the car, grabbed the chair which was absolutely filthy, and tried to ram it in the trunk. We couldn’t fit it in the car without taking the back seats out so I took our little girl out of the car and we rode the subway home so the chair could fit.
I loved this chair. And I still do.
I was drawn to its lines and lack of visible seams. To me, it was like it just appeared out of nowhere. I wasn’t sure if it was comfortable or durable. We did have a three-year old at home to think about. But I fell in love with it.
I later learned that this is a Bellini Chair, designed by Mario Bellini in 1998 – the year my first daughter was born. It is our oldest piece of furniture in our home.
I like beautiful objects. Lately I have been struggling with this fact. How do I find the balance between this appreciation of beautifully crafted objects and the dangers of consumption and becoming too materialistic? I don’t want to be attached to things but just looking at this chair in my home brings me a deep and satisfying pleasure.
Some spiritual advice suggests detachment from things and people in order to avoid suffering and preoccupation with the material world. Then how do we remain connected with the here and now? How do we detach without giving up our investment in relationships, the necessary feelings of compassion and empathy and even the wonder of nature itself?
I don’t have an answer. Today there are these questions. And a chair. A chair, in its simple construction, that has been a constant companion and symbol of endurance and sentimentality over the last 15 years.
100 scribbles…hurriedly writing the here and now.