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Passed-down family furniture can become more beautiful as it grows older, but past a certain point the core structure may start to give. This age-conscious design is more than a case-specific solution – it is a statement about how we can rehabilitate rather than replace priceless personal objects that have value beyond the sum of their parts.

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Titled Grandmother’s Chair, this classic wood seat was breaking down along one side – a hobbled leg and splintering back simply had to be fixed. One answer would have been to find matching material and make it look like it used to, but the reality would not match the illusion. Worse yet, the owner would know it.

Instead, clear resin was cast in the shape of the seat by H220430 studio – a kind of fill-in-the-blank solution that does not seek to replicate the original components. Through contrast, it becomes clear (no pun intended) what parts were salvaged and which pieces were added to save the rest.

If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then memory lies in the emotionally-charged portions of the mind. For some, it would be better to repair the aging chair in the most seamless manner possible. For others, this hybrid creation preserves what remains in the most respectful way possible.

grandmothers chair side view

This antique chair is from my grandmother’s store. Although it is an attractive chair with a beautiful silhouette, it is clearly getting old. One leg is broken and the backrest is so damaged that it looks sad. However, I still find the chair attractive. I tried to repair the chair to make it usable again. It is sad to loose the memories and associated with an old object when it is repaired. It is as if the act of renewal resets the memories that accumulated within the object. It also feels insensitive to fake the age of new parts by ‘distressing’ their surface.”

“In my work I try to acknowledge the patina of time and memories that belong to an object. I replaced the missing leg and the backrest of the chair by using clear resin casts, so as to acknowledge the absence of the originals. My work Grandmother’s chair ”Suggests that in an age marked by problems associated with excessive production and consumption, we could benefit from a rediscovery of our respect for things from the past.”