Barbara Broughel: Storytelling Chairs

Dim room with spotlights on six spaced out colorful 17th and 18th century chairs with household items sitting on them. 

Installation view, Barbara Broughel: Storytelling Chairs, MIT List Visual Arts Center, 1991. Archival slide. 

Bakalar Gallery
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Barbara Broughel
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This New York-based artist has previously created poetic versions of various products important in the history of political economy, such as diamonds, coffee, and tobacco, to convey symbolically significant details of their production circumstances.

Her Storytelling Chairs, shown here for the first time, chronicle the Iroquois and their under-acknowledged impact on early American thought and culture. The eight 17th and 18th-century chairs are deftly transformed by the artist’s colorful interventions and invite a reassessment of colonial American history. 

Publication Available. Accordion brochure contains full-color reproductions of the chairs and 4 black and white illustrations, and an essay by Edward Ball.