Houston, Texas

The site for this installation is beside the large Athletic Alumni Facility built by the University of Houston.  Although at one of the main entries to the campus, the facility does not relate in terms of scale or urban order with either the campus or the surrounding neighborhood houses, many of them the traditional shotgun plan. Remnants of streets, landscape elements and house foundations were visible at the edge of this complex.  This boundary which was otherwise insistently mundane – sidewalk, narrow strip of grass, fencing – became the area of focus. Drawing on the image of casual seating in residential front yards used to escape the heat, chairs turn this unconsidered, leftover space into an area that feels like it has been recently occupied as well as offering the possibility that it will be again soon.

One hundred chairs constructed of painted aluminum and wire mesh, ranging in size from eighteen inches to seven feet tall, have been placed along the three block border adjacent to the playing fields and buildings of this athletic complex. Two chairs, one dark, another light, are next to a bus shelter; another seven foot tall wire mesh chair is humorous looking when occupied; a circle of very small chairs seems to await the arrival of the local nursery school.  The repetition of these unassuming elements sets up the expectation that this scattering will multiply and continue to infiltrate  the surrounding area; the chairs act as connectors visually and through use.  Without making an imposing physical intervention new paths of movement are set up allowing the passerby to redefine this boundary as a place to be occupied and activated.  Houston, Tx