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Exhibitions > Yaacov Kaufman - Stools 4

Close to the Trunk

This group of chunky stools calls to mind the stool's evolution out of tree trunks. The story begins with someone sitting on a tree trunk cut by chance at a comfortable height. The next stage was the uprooting of the trunk and its transformation into a chunky, heavy, not truly transportable stool. In the following stages, a slice was removed from the chunk of wood to create a seat, and legs were affixed to it using various methods. Later on, a backrest was added, and the stool became a chair.

This group includes numerous transitional stages, which study the process of transforming a chunk of wood into a stool by exploring various modes of production, and playing with different weights and methods for carving the wood. These transitional stages are located at different points along the
continuum - closer or farther away than the original chunk of wood. Small families within the group were born of the same chunk of wood, and certain pairs evolved out of maximizing the use of a single chunk so that they complete one another, coming together to precisely recreate a full chunk.

The longing to return to natural, crude materials is evident in the design world. Here, rounded beams of real wood represent the original tree trunk, while the square ones represent its industrialized, processed form. The material is cut and turned to produce a rich morphology - natural, exposed chunks of wood that tell the story of their formation and make evident the touch of the "artist's hand." Two cuts in a single beam will give rise to five forms that are culturally structured rather than chaotic. The peeling of the material creates the iconic form of a seat, which
calls for a body to occupy it. The chunky character of the stools means that many of them have no clearly defined legs. Their form is almost unchanging, so that the designation of the seat and of the area resting on the ground is up to the user. 

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Yaacov Kaufman - Stools
photo: Itay Benit

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