Thursday, January 15, 2009

Theme Thursday: Chair


I have three chairs in my house: one for solitude, two for friendship, three for society.
-Thoreau



This is the chair I think of when I think of a CHAIR: Van Gogh's Chair painted in Arles in the winter of 1888/1889, making this its 120th anniversary, if paintings have such things. In reading about it, I've discovered that it is actually one of a pair of paintings. The other is of Gauguin's chair, a painting I hadn't seen until I pulled an art history book off the shelf and then looked around on the Internet.

The art history book goes on a bit, in art historical fashion: "Van Gogh's conviction about the importance of this chair [his, above] penetrates us and holds us, until we feel a mystery in its presence." Well, something like that, I suppose. I just like it, and used to have an art card of his bedroom, which also has this chair in it, up in my dorm room in college. It's interesting paired with its mate, though. Gauguin's looks and feels so much like his paintings:



My chair for reading cookbooks and trying to come up with dinner was rescued for $1.00 from the side of the road in Whitingham, Vermont, years and years ago.

29 comments:

PG said...

Art historians do write a load of twaddle sometimes! (Sometimes a chair is just...a chair) Is that the River Cottage meat book I spy by your cosy reading chair?

Squirrel said...

Oh I love a good rescued chair, I will always stop to check out a chair on the roadside! Love the Thoreau quote and V's chairs.

tut-tut said...

yes, PG it is! I cooked my Christmas roast beef dinner from it, and very delicious it all was, too.

ParisBreakfasts said...

What a fun post!
I have rescued chairs and I have a very nice Windsor at the moment saved from the street...
I'm delighted to have discovered your Fr word of the day widget.

Big Merci!

lettuce said...

i used to have those van Gogh art cards in my student room too

and i love the rescued chair.
and its cockerel cushion - did you make it?

mouse (aka kimy) said...

your cookbook chair has a lot of character....and it looks quite comfy.

I got a kick out of the synchronicity of our posting the same quote and would you believe I almost posted a photo I took in van gogh's bedroom when he was in the 'asylum' but held it back for when we do a bed theme...as the chair isn't as prominent as the bed!

just arrived at my folks house in metro dc.... clear and cold here, but not as cold as cleveland!

happy theme day!

Kurt said...

I will use just about any chair, but I prefer one with no arms for playing music.

Coffee Messiah said...

Nicely done and Thanks for participating.

It may catch on yet ; )

JGH said...

Very cool to have a special cooking chair- so what other special task chairs can we put in our houses? A special hairbrushing chair? A looking out the window chair? a drying the dishes stool?
I think I need to rescue a few.

Megan said...

Did they have a chair painting competition? I mean...well, you know what I mean, right?

I like your chair very much and yes, must know about the rooster!

Joanne said...

I like how you put your chair in the same league as van Gogh and Gauguin. Nice!

Reya Mellicker said...

Fabulous chairs - all of them! Especially yours.

Auntie, aka cagny said...

hi tut tut,
i just read your comment on the golden puppy about schools in your area closed because students lack warm clothing.
as a teacher up here in nyc, i wish we could close schools for that same reason! many of my students still come to school in freezing temps with just a jacket and a hoodie.
btw, just how cold is it in your neck of the woods?

Barbara said...

I like yours the best of the three. It seems just right.

Auntie, aka cagny said...

hi back to you,
it was just 1 degree?
that is cold indeed.
my copy of the farmer's almanac claims that global warming may be coming to an end...their predictions are based on recent sun spot activity.
hmmmmm.

tut-tut said...

Oh no; we are hard by the last bastion of those denying global warming, and certainly if there IS such a thing, human activity has nothing whatsoever to do with it. ARGH.

dennis said...

Dennis votes for the last chair

Gledwood said...

Van Gough's paintings look good enough to eat...

Middle Ditch said...

I have such a chair! Like the van Gogh chair. My grandfather was a chair pleater (pleating the seats with willow I believe) and the original is still there after at least 50 years. And very comfy too!

Mountain Dweller said...

If your chair gives you inspiration about what to cook for lunch, then I want one too!

e said...

I love the chairs, particularly yours, rescued, and used to gather the inspiration for dinner and other meals. At the moment, I lack a favorite chair entirely...

Avid Reader said...

My favorite chair is one I found along the side of the road. I'm a trash-picker from way back. Chairs are the first things I look for at antique shops and flea markets.

THANK YOU for mentioning Margaret Drabble in your profile... for two days I was straining my brain trying to recall the name of this novelist...and later I saw her name listed. I was able to go on Amazon and look at her novels-- Read about 4 or 5 of them quite a few years ago. Did you know her sister is A.S. Byatt? Did you know she was once married to Clive Swift (Richard Bucket from the BBC series "Keeping Up Appearances"?) I just found this out-- yay wikipedia!


from wiki:
A. S. Byatt caused controversy by suggesting that the popularity of J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter series of books is because they are "written for people whose imaginative lives are confined to TV cartoons, and the exaggerated (more exciting, not threatening) mirror-worlds of soaps, reality TV and celebrity gossip." In her editorial column in the New York Times newspaper, she scathingly attacked adult readers of the series as uncultured, claiming that "they don't have the skills to tell ersatz magic from the real thing, for as children they daily invested the ersatz with what imagination they had."

Novelist Fay Weldon defended Byatt and praised her for speaking out. Remember Fay Weldon?

citizen of the world said...

Nice job with the chair theme.

herhimnbryn said...

I like your chair best of all three. I think because you rescued it. It looks quite at home next to your bookshelves.

Also, we have just put lots of junk out on our road side this morning. It is supposed to be collected by the council on Monday. However, I suspect it will be picked over by passersby before then. The ultimate in recycling!

poppy fields said...

I love your chair, it has an artist's look to it.

angela said...

I used to have the Van Gogh peach tree in my kitchen. I love the exuberance of his paintings. I think your chair looks perfect for browsing cook books.
I've just finished reading My Life In France by Julia Child...not a cookbook but a combination of food talk and France and the life of a fascinating lady. I loved every word and will read it again in a month or two

Shammickite said...

Chairs have their own personality don't they? Love that rooster cushion.

tut-tut said...

Avid: I did know that M. Drabble had been married to an actor. On her early novels (I have some, somewhere) her bio lists that fact. But NO—I did not realize it was to Hyacinth Bucket's husband! What a trivia fact, and the kind of thing I love to know. Thank you.

I did know AS Byatt was her sister, though.

Fact about myself: I have yet to read a Harry Potter, so I cannot weigh in on the controversy.

Maddy said...

I heard a whole programme on the radio [well snatches of it really] devoted to an author of a new book who collects chairs. It was quite fascinating as was the phone in afterwards, so you're in good company.

Cheers