Furniture has long been part of artist Tom Sachs’ oeuvre. For over 30 years he’s been designing and building chairs, tables, cabinets and more, considering his furniture an extension of his
This week, Sachs unveils his first furniture show in the US in over 20 years, at Stony Island Arts Bank in Chicago, a building supported by
The exhibition will showcase a selection of new and past designs, including his ‘Shop Chair’, which appeared on Wallpaper’s April 2019 newsstand cover. Its plentiful holes are inspired by the so-called ‘lightening holes’ from Second World War aviation, when excess material was removed to make structures both lighter and stronger. ‘We drilled out as much as we could while still making sure there is support,’ Sachs told Wallpaper* at the time.
His armchair titled Crate Chair No 13 (2018) is crafted from found ConEd red and white barriers, a material he previously used in his mixed media artwork The Cabinet (2014).
Indeed, Sachs creates his pieces with evidence of their construction, almost delighting in the very practice of building. His fascination with the everyday plays out in his mixed-media sculptures, which often use ordinary-to-the-point-of-mundane materials. These are not cosy, comfortable designs; there’s not an upholstered cushion in sight.
After all, Sachs is the artist who, regarding his long-term collaboration with Nike, told Wallpaper*: ‘I take the sock-liners out of my sneakers so that the ground is harder below so I can think clearer. I like to feel my skeletal structure because it’s within all of us.’
Although they are considered an extension of his art and
To mark the opening of the Chicago exhibition, Tom Sachs’ Rocket Factory will be doing a physical rocket launch on 8 July at Chicago’s Kenwood Gardens, another of the city’s South Side locations invested in by Theaster Gates. §