Saturday, August 24, 2013

Francis Cape, "Utopian Benches" @ Murray Guy

Last summer, I had a studio visit with Francis Cape and heard him give a talk. I left utterly amazed at how interesting the man made the subject of chairs and the design of furniture. From what I recall, he has a general appreciation for the simple craftsmanship of, say, benches in communal spaces like churches and old-timey town halls. More conceptually, he likes how the design of the bench in its length, and its lack of a back and armrest encourages people to sit on a bench to engage with the people around them. And I’ll be damned if upon sitting down on one of the many benches at Murray Guy, a middle-aged woman didn’t out of the blue start talking to me about my experience with the benches, and we talked for a while about sitting on benches. It was what I would imagine the work is ideally suppose to elicit, so if you get hot and tired walking around Chelsea I can strongly recommend Francis Cape’s rather beautiful collection of benches.

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