About the project

The Texas Chair Project is the first of 3 phases of a project that will ultimately benefit the arts and the environment, two “chairished chairities”. picture of all 100 chairs

The idea behind The Chair Project stems from a long tradition of artists trading with artists. Artist Damian Priour has created 100 chairs made from his signature combination of glass and limestone. The stone is 100 million years old, some have fossils embedded in them and others are carved. These chairs will go to about 100 artists who will be asked to, in return, create a chair of their own making. The only limitation is that their chair must fit into the same 8x8x8 inch box that the Priour chair comes in. That does not mean that it must confine itself to that size when the box is opened, however. Artists are encouraged to use the materials for which they are known but the only thing required is creativity.

Artists should feel free to experiment, be creative, paint, build or sculpt. Any media is acceptable, as long as it can be exhibited. They can be either 2d or 3d. Painters uncomfortable with sculpture may paint a found or purchased chair or create a painting of a chair. It’s all about stretching creative muscles, limited only to the format of a chair no matter how one interprets it.

The artists won’t be notified in advance that they are being invited to participate. The impact of opening an unexpected package containing something that is theirs to keep -- no matter what -- is a strong one. Hopefully, the delight at receiving an unexpected gift may convey into a similar delight in participation. There is the possibility of sending them out and nothing comes back, but that is part of the project too, even though that is not expected to happen.

The Austin Museum of Art has enthusiastically endorsed this project, and together we are planning an exhibit that will appeal to a very broad audience during their showcasing in the fall of 2014. The chairs of the participating artists will be on exhibit at the Austin Museum of Art from November 15th, 2014 through February 8th, 2014. There are also unconfirmed plans to have the exhibit travel to more museum venues.

They should make a great exhibit. Chairs are, after all ubiquitous with no lack of symbolism. They can be places of honor or places of punishment. They comfort us and support us. We can cuddle in them or squirm or sleep or fall off of them. Interesting things, chairs. Chairs can garner a sense of community... imagine them in a circle. They can be meditative... imagine one alone in a room.

There are more than a few potential off-shoot projects associated with this. One can imagine artists trading the chairs they get from Priour among themselves. Or, a collector trying to collect all of them from the individual artists.

Phase 1 -- the first 100 chairs -- are going to artists with a Texas connection. Phase 2 and 3 are The National Chair Project and The Global Chair project, in which artists will donate chairs to be auctioned off for the above mentioned "chairity" categories.

Please feel free to communicate in writing. A compilation of the best correspondence with participating artist’s thoughts, ideas and opinions on chairs will be published, with permission.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I am a painter, not a sculptor?
You have choices. Either make a chair painting, find a small chair and paint it, or expand your horizons and make a chair out of anything, as long as it fits into the box provided. It is about being creative.
When will the first exhibit take place?
In the Fall of 2014. You will of course be invited to the opening and possibly asked to speak.
Who are the other artists participating in this project?
The list is not yet public but rest assured you are in good company. This project is starting in Texas with global expansion plans in the works. You chair will most likely become part of a very significant collection.
Do I have to send the chair back if I can’t participate?
This project is about the long history of artists trading with artists. Returning the chair will allow another artist to be invited to trade if you cannot participate.
What is the value of the Damian Priour chair?
Approximately $1,000.
Can I see pictures of the other Damian Priour chairs?
Yes. They will be catalogued also.
What materials should I use?
Using material for which you are recognized is the first choice, but creativity is limitless. Anything goes, as long as it can be exhibited on a permanent basis.
Is return postage paid?
Yes, a label with postage is included in the box. Please use the same box and stick the label over the one addressed to you.
What is the deadline for sending my chair?
It should be received by December 1, 2014 so that it can be photographed for the catalog and plans for the exhibit can be started.


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