Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Art versus Comfort

Noguchi Free Form SofaWhen I worked for Indiana University, my bosses were big fans of Design Within Reach.   They ordered some really beautiful stacking chairs for the College Arts and Humanities Institute (CAHI).  Since I'm on a Sofa Kick, I decided to see what DWR had in the couch department. (Amazon has the same one, BTW.)
The couch above was designed by Isamu Noguchi.  I have a bit of a fascination with Noguchi because he spent a few of his high school years here in La Porte.  They tend to leave that bit out of his biographies.  Apparently La Porte likes him more than he liked La Porte. 

The DWR description warns us that Noguchi was "foremost a sculptor" and that the sofa is "lightly padded" and provides "firm seating."   I've never sat on this piece, but I'm pretty sure all those words are code for "very uncomfortable."  Personally, I don't think the above sofa looks particularly inviting.  It doesn't yell "Lounge on me!"  Instead, it darkly hints that if you sit on it in the wrong way, you'll end up falling off onto the floor.  Or maybe that's only if you're as clumsy as I am.

My Husband's favorite line in the advertisement was the declaration that, "the sofa has a grandly scaled, open form that accommodates multiple people."   "I should hope so,"  he shouted.  "It's a FRIGGIN' SOFA!"  Maybe people like us are the reason that Noguchi wasn't fond of Indiana.

3 comments:

julie said...

i always have to laugh when i hear the name "design within reach." we have one in bethesda, and i've never found an item whose price was within my reach!

Deirdre Mundy said...

Julie-- I know! Though, to be honest, my 'reach' really only extends as far as Craigslist and Rummage sales this week.....

Deirdre Mundy said...

er... I mean, at this point....