Thursday, August 5, 2010

Biography of a Chair

A photo, taken from the photographer's terrace on the crest of the eastern slope of Telegraph Hill, 1979. This fragment, together with the edifices of San Francisco, from the Campanile to Nob Hill, would have been the scan of the naked eye from the dining room's southern windows. A spare room, it was furnished with an oval dining table of Thomas Chippendale, acquired through Malcolm Franklin in Chicago, a portrait of an ancient matriarch on the only unglazed wall, and 20th Century chairs, acquired through Knoll Associates in San Francisco. 

A project of this space has been to present a biography of that chair, which begins unexpectedly with its conclusion, here.

When he closed this apartment to move to Sausalito, the dining chairs were sold to a resident of Nob Hill. The purchaser has a name which belongs to history this morning, as the author of a decision rendered yesterday in the U.S. District Court for Northern California. The title of that case is Perry v. Schwarzenegger

It is always pleasing when a good chair can find a good home.

Sunrise on Calhoun Terrace
Photography by Laurent
Leica M-6, 50mm Summicron, Kodak Ektar Pan


  1. i am very happy to live in california today, it feels as golden as above

    (again, your photos: never to be forgotten)

  2. A photograph of this improbable refulgence has to await its time to make any sense. Again, I simply got out of bed and stood there, in a feverish gesture of graffiti which one had to exhale to expunge, and deliver the softest putting stroke to the shutter at slow speed.

    I know very well the trial this decision will undergo, and its brilliance makes one quite bashful to offer it this response. But what answer will they give, to suppress the morn again?

  3. wonderful story ending- do you still miss those chairs. today the gods are smiling.

  4. The chairs were for their place; again, the thing wants the right home.

    As for the gods, they had a couple of superlative lawyers and a case for injustice which has never been more shabbily made - always admitting, there are limits to how well you can dignify mob rule. They have yet to meet the Court renowned for divining outcomes from the thin air of Party preferment, and two misanthropes bred in Right-Wing think tanks ever since their matriculation at universities they openly detested - Thomas at Yale, Alito at Princeton - to careers in repressive casuistry.

    But I stray. These must be innocent gods. :)