A place for you! Chair-Exhibition
21. may – 26. september 1999
Chair-Exhibition on the Web
Have a sit!
Objects gathered in a museum do not only tell tales of history of culture but intentions of respective researchers and museologists as well. This exhibition is aimed at giving an insight into this process of history of science.

A certain image of the „peasant chair” has struck a long root in the public thinking. We mean here the pieces of furniture that turn up for example in tschardas and other „Hungarian” places influenced by folklore. These chairs are called board-backed chairs in the nomenclature. Though this view seems monolithic and leaves no way to argue from many aspects, this object has given ethnography much more work. In fact our lives have very few parts where chairs cannot be found, and variegation of their use is next to confusing. This implies an exceptional diversity of forms. From the beginning known today, chairs have served for indicating rank and honour, and representation (this is referred to by the word „chairman” and so on). Besides, chairs must comply with the most complicated anatomical requirements among all kinds of furniture.

The exhibition draws an arc of deconstruction springing from the constructed image symbolizing this piece of peasant furniture which is struck roots in public thinking to a better approach or, if we dare say, touch and acceptance of reality. This, we might say, originating from the nature of the collection, in harmony with facts of history of science and related to the more than 125 years elapsed since the foundation of the Museum of Ethnography. The concept of chair is used in the exhibition in its everyday sense, so furniture serving for one person’s sitting (including emergency furniture) are meant by it and we restrict ourselves to exhibiting objects guarded in the Collection of Furniture and Lighting Facilities of the Museum of Ethnography. Excerpts from the literature serve as exhibition text – maintaining original spelling.

Gábor Fejer
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 Museum of Ethnograpy 1999