Rick Owens - Design New York Wednesday, June 9, 2010 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Galerie Jousse Entreprise, Paris

  • Catalogue Essay

    Renowned fashion designer Rick Owens launched his own line of geometric chairs, stools, and daybeds in 2005, most of them made in the same building that houses his atelier on the Place du Palais Bourbon in Paris. "Order and discipline are my comfort zones," Owens declared in a recent interview (Vanessa Friedman, "His Dark Materials," Financial Times: How to Spend It, London, March 20, 2010, Web). His chairs support that statement; a compliment to his angular fashions, their lines are strict, planes wide, surfaces hard. They recall the square, blunt furniture of Donald Judd, although without Judd's total devotion to right angles--Owens bends a bit. His "Curial" chair (2006) stands at attention, but the curve of its seat eases the eye, if not the posterior. A Judd maxim comes to mind: "I think the thing to do is to either sit up or lie down or stand up: I'm not sympathetic to in-between positions." ("Donald Judd Furniture," Louisa Guinness Gallery, London, Web)
    The Curia Julia in Room, the Senate House built by Julius Caesar, stands as a reminder of our endless need to convene. Its austere walls, faced with pale, exposed brick, held within their confines the fevered deliberations of the assembled tribe, circa 44 B.C. Two millennia later our confab continues, albeit between less hallowed walls. Owens's "Curial" chair hints at a different sort of meeting place. Its plywood construction--flat bottom, steep arms--directly references those half-pipe skateboard ramps so prevalent in backyards throughout Southern California, where Owens grew up. The tribe is shaggier but the talk can't be so different: curial decrees, shouts, young men boasting in air. Owens's chair, a humble throne built from everyday materials, elevates the conversation.


“Curial” chair

ca. 2006
26 in. (66 cm.) high.
Number five from the edition of 25.  One leg with inset label with artist’s signature and “5 / 25.”

$6,000 - 8,000 

Sold for $8,125


9 June 2010
New York