A Man and His Chair.

Since I moved to Providence, most mornings I wake to the dulcet sounds of an angle grinder. My new roommate Paul, of rocking chair fame, has a big thing for wood. Yes, I know that’s not very original and yes, I am giggling. I’m sure you think I’ve been waiting awhile to say that, but I assure you it just came to me. Paul’s new piece is made of walnut, and it’s drop dead gorgeous.

Paul’s chair is a personal project, not a school assignment, and due to limited space in the school studios he has to work from home, on our lawn. That means that Paul’s chair-time is totally dependent on nice weather. Paul once remarked to me that his chair would be created solely in sunshine, which I thought was a really lovely notion.

Paul’s relationship with this chair is truly something to behold. You might think he was lovesick, if we weren’t talking about a piece of furniture. Paul sometimes moves the chair from room to room with him, like he can’t bear to have it out of his sight. I’ve caught him giving it a little stroke on the armrest (absentmindedly, like he’s completely unaware of what he’s doing) as he heads out the door. Sometimes I notice him sitting on the couch, a look of deep, pensive thought on his face as he idly smooths his ‘stache. And if I ask him what he’s thinking about? Always, without fail, he’s got the backrest on his mind, or the back legs, or that little stripe of darker wood at the base of the right armrest. I love the pictures below because you can tell just from the way Paul touches the thing, how he puts his hands on it, that he’s completely in love with this project.

It’s really nice to live in a house with that kind of energy around. I find that being surrounded by these incredibly passionate creative people makes me want to participate in my own way, to really devote myself to things like my writing, my photography. Which was kind of the whole point of coming here, so: so far, so good. More pictures of Paul’s chair to come!

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