Friday, March 5, 2010

The King of Chairs

If you asked anyone from the House staff which representative's office they thought is the most unique, they would without question tell you room 315, the office of Representative Tom Brower, from Waikiki.

Upon entrance into the office, butterflies, birds, Tinkerbell and all of Snow White's friends ascend toward the skies from a barkless tree rooted in the corner.

Watch your head as you walk into the office. Large, colorful cranes - which Rep. Brower made himself - sway wistfully overhead.

Influenced by Verner's Panton use of geometric shapes in many of his patterns and furniture designs, Rep. Brower lines his desk walls with homemade wallpaper resembling a chessboard.

Trust me. You will feel as if you fell down a rabbit hole and landed in wonderland to have tea parties with anthropomorphic characters, and to explore the geometric kingdom ruled by the King of Chairs. (Off with her her...leg?)

Yes. King of Chairs. I'll get to that in a minute.

So, instead of blowing your money to see Johnny Depp in yet another creepy role that makes you feel like at any moment he will withdraw a musical pipe and eerily play a tune that leads rats and children to their demise, I have a better idea for a Friday night activity.

We are holding our Second Annual Art at the Capitol event tonight, March's First Friday. You will be able to explore 45 offices, including Rep. Brower's retro wonderland, and view over 430 art pieces that each lawmaker selected from the State Art in Public Places collection. It's from 5 - 7 p.m.

Like Rep. Brower, some of the lawmakers will also display some pieces from their personal "art" collection. Anything and everything can be art, right?

Rep. Brower, aka the "King of Chairs," has brought in for the event his collection of modern and classic chairs, as well as some other furniture pieces. He is a big fan of architecture and interior design, and especially fascinated by art in everyday objects.

One of the chairs, as seen in the movie Legally Blond 2 and the Barbara Walters interview of Lady Gaga, is called the King Louis Ghost Chair. Phillipe Start designed the chair in 2002 and manufactured it using transparent polycarbonate. Rep. Brower has three of them on display in his office.

The other chairs are:

Wire Chair by Charles and Ray Eames, 1951 for Vitra (Switzerland). Made of bent wire with an Eiffel Tower base. (As seen in Kimora Lee’s walk-in closet on MTV Cribs.)

Panton S Chair by Verner Panton, 1960 for Vitra (Switzerland). The world’s first cantilevered stacking chair made of a single material and a single-form mold. Among the most well designed chairs of the 20th Century. (As seen in the Woody Allen movie Sleeper.)

Plywood Side Chair by Charles and Ray Eames, 1946 for Herman Miller (Michigan). Eleven years ago Time magazine stated that this was the best design for an object made in the last 100 years (The locomotive came in second) and called the design "something elegant, light and comfortable.”

Top Photo: Office Manager Cynthia Nyross shows off the wall mural in Rep. Tom Brower's office.

Bottom Photo: Rep. Tom Brower with his collection of chairs.

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