Michael Wolf’s book on ‘Sitting China’ is a simple idea yet it creates a theme which is surprisingly insightful into the world of people living in such a booming country. His photographs show old, modern, broken and creative pieces put together to suit everyday needs.
They are not meant to be works of art, they are purely functional. That is how they are intended at least, he photographs chairs that have been fixed and adapted to serve a primary purpose – sitting.
No matter how basic these chairs may be, he has found creativity and characters in objects that are often old and quirky however they are still functional and are put to good use.
While in China he received criticism from people who watched him photograph these often dilapidated and strange looking contraptions. Some felt he was trying to paint China in a bad light.
He tried to explain that he was in fact fascinated by these chairs as they provided far more character than a modern sleek chair. The book appears to be documenting pieces which may seem like art to many people.
It shows different sides of China, it would be unreasonable to assume China is full of dilapidated chairs, but it would also be unrealistic to think that these would not exist in any country.
Patchwork furniture series by London-based Norwegian designer Amy Hunting
Last week I found some planks on the street along with a little table and a wooden box. Being a quite resourceful person I picked them up, to the dismay of my flatmate. I argued that they were free and much too good to be left in the rain!
Ryan Frank's Strata line made from discarded office furniture
We buy items and we throw them away. We buy our lunch in a packet and coffee in a paper cup, how much are we spending on packaging? Is all that plastic even necessary? We want nice modern furniture on a budget, we go to IKEA. After moving house and dismantling the flat pack cupboard for the 3rd time it breaks and becomes unusable, we ask ourselves – was it really worth it?
”]The amount of perfectly good items people throw away is crazy. With the right skills you can take free material littered around London and create a work of art or a practical object. There are a growing number of recycled furniture makers in London and throughout the UK. This is allowing local craftsmen to put their skills to good use and create unique and high quality objects without the carbon footprint and at a lower cost. There are a range of different designers and sellers, ranging from quirky artistic pieces to classic and practical furniture made from reclaimed wood.