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date: 17 April 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the chair as both a mundane, physical object with the role of ‘seating a person’ and as a cultural artefact with a history of use, of handcraft, of design, and even of artistic representation. It suggests the chair’s agency is only partly given by its specific materiality, but is also shaped by the manifold historic, artistic, craft, design, and architectural contexts in which it has been placed. By tracing these material and discursive relations, the chapter shows how the chair enables and shapes organizational life by both visualizing absence and thus creating a longing for presence and by affirming social positions and elevating power.

Keywords: chairs, materiality, social role, artistic representation, seating practices

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