Why Are These Chairs Stacked Up at GRACE?

by Karen Goff April 20, 2016 at 11:30 am 5 Comments

Work by Wells and Barnes/Courtesy GRACE

Greater Reston Arts Center is prepping for a new exhibit, Wells & Barnes: Seats of Power, opening this week at the Greater Reston Arts Center.


“In this upcoming exhibition, Gayle Wells Mandle and her daughter, Julia Barnes Mandle, use the motif of chairs as a vehicle to examine society’s eternal power struggle.

Inspired by events in the Middle East and the United States, this series explores political and economic inequality through a variety of media, including large-format photography, painting, sculpture, installation, and embroidery.

Gayle Wells Mandle is based in Massachusetts and Julia Mandle resides in the Netherlands, where she recently received support from the prestigious Mondriaan Fund.

Gayle Wells Mandle says it is her responsibility as an “artist to draw attention to world events that affect our well-being. ”

“My inspiration is drawn from crumbling infrastructure and detritus left by ‘civilization,’ ” she says in her artist’s statement. “For years I’ve been questioning the ever-growing global economic imbalance.”

There will be an opening at GRACE, 12001 Market St. at Reston Town Center, Friday, April 22, 6 to 8 p.m.

The exhibit opens Thursday and will run until June 18. Admission is free.

Work by Wells and Barnes/Courtesy GRACE

  • Chuck Morningwood

    Meh. Try doing that with your furniture at home and see whether you spouse is so enthusiastic about it.

  • MJay

    The RA Board is now gleefully rubbing their hands together as they contemplate upping the proposed $65,000 donation from the RA member coffers to fund local artists capable of crafting chair art.

  • Greg

    What a waste.

  • John In VA

    I am all for artistic interpretation, but this appears to be the foundation for a bonfire. What a waste of time to assemble such nonsense.

  • RestonWriterPerson

    Agitprop. Google it. Art is now all very obvious politicized opinion. I like the physical impact of these works. If it’s to make a single, obvious political statement the artist describes very literally for us the viewers, as these two have, there really is nothing for the viewer to do. “It’s about inequality.” Ah. Thanks. Later.


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