When is a chair not a chair? When it forms the foundation for a wood-frame house constructed by artist/woodworker Ted Lott. Lott’s explorations of furniture and architecture highlight the inextricable connections between the two while crafting a carefree discussion on the relationship between design and its context.
This piece, entitled Sit/Stay, was constructed on top of an old chair frame. The front of the house – which is oriented at the back of the chair – looks just as you might expect a traditional wood-frame house to look, complete with ground-level entrance.
The back of the house dips into more playful territory, displaying a series of curves and slants that perfectly echo the curves and shapes of the chair foundation.
While the chair adds a certain set of limitations to the sculpture it supports, it also provides a stable sensibility and contextual inspiration for the house. In a very real sense, the house could not exist without the chair – and the aged, torn-down chair would be useless without the house.
Other designs in the same series created by Lott, like “Habitation #6,” above, still technically function as seating, with the sculptural elements set underneath, doubling as a lamp.
“Ted Lott is a Craftsperson, Designer and Artist whose work revolves around the history of wood in Material Culture and Architecture. Lott received his BFA in Woodworking & Furniture Design from the Maine College of Art, and his MFA from the University of Wisconsin Madison. Lott has exhibited work in numerous solo exhibitions, including at the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Swarthmore College, and the University of North Carolina-Charlotte College of Art & Architecture.”
“He has taught Woodworking & Furniture Design at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, Murray State University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and teaches workshops throughout the United States. Lott lives with his family in Grand Rapids Michigan.”