when buildings become furniture, become movable,
become paintings, become stories, becomes a color, become memories.

Stephen Prina

R.M. Schindler

top image, Schindler, pair of end tables, c 1943

I often wonder where buildings end, and the furniture begins? Where do rooms stop and color blend? Spaces melding with history! Stephen Prina's recent work in Vienna encouraged me to pull a catalog off my library shelf that I received from Gerard O'Brien at REFORM Gallery (who hosted a fantastic evening with Leslie Williamson last week.) This catalog is from a past LAMA Auction that sadly, I never saw in person. Prina works with the collective memory. Enjoy Prina's work, and Schindler's masterpieces.

When furniture becomes buildings, our homes can become the village. Good Sunday to you in pink, in New York, to those who continue to march... - DAVID JOHN


"I never refer to these painted objects as sculpture and I trying not to refer to them as paintings." - Stephen Prina (from here)

"Stephen Prina is characterized by his appropriation of works by other artists, which he then places in new contexts. The point of departure for As He Remembered It is a memory from the 1980s, shared with artist Christopher Williams, of a fitted unit by architect R. M. Schindler that is taken out of its original context, painted, and recontextualized as an independent object."

"When Schindler failed to receive architecture commissions, he gladly accepted contracts that called for the design and execution of furniture. One of the reasons for this, in addition to the obvious necessity to keep working and earning, was the fact that although the scale was smaller, he was still creating architecture. Ratios and pitches, systems and sense of space - all were brought forward from Schindler's vocabulary in buildings into the scaled down world of furniture making."

- Michael Boyd, "Furniture as Micro Architecture: R.M. Schindler's Gingold Commissions

Stephen Prina: "I never refer to these painted objects as sculpture and I trying not to refer to them as paintings. I refer to them as objects almost in the way that Donald Judd would refer to his as specific objects. So they are coloured objects.

But I realize that in the painting application there is the tradition of painting function of the under-painting. I am painting a green object as we speak, so I look at how the green comes through when the brush strokes get a little bit thinner. And then when the paint pools on the surface it doesn’t allow that come through so much and it advances itself as a surface that has more shine. You know, when I started this painting process I wasn’t sure how many layers of paint were going to be involved, because I wanted to see it. I was actually very, very surprised that one coat seamed to do it. When we were actually painting them and they were still wet I thought no this don’t look right. And, then when I came in the next day I saw everything changed when it dried. If I put any more paint on it, it will occlude some of these details and you will not have visual access to the under-painting. It won’t have this play and range of incident that I wanted. Because I think these objects have a peculiar design, as any kind of functional object that has been ripped of its context will have, but then beyond that, I wanted people to inspect these painterly incidents. So it wasn’t that they were made out of a slab of a solid material, but they actually have a skin that envelops the objects and alters the way in which we apprehend that skin.

, Pink, 2011 Color of the Year.

Stephen Prina: "To talk about the Pantone Colour of The Year, that afforded me a relief. It is a relief from the total dependence upon the personal anecdote we started with. I thought, at some moment I have to select a pink and that pink is only in my memory. I remember it one way, but how do you even describe a color that is in your memory? I was a little bit concerned that there would be too much of a preoccupation on everything going back to the memory. And, at one point I was speaking with Kimberli Meyer, who is the director of the Schindler house, and we were talking of the fact that Pauline Schindler, the ex-wife of Schindler, had painted her half of the Schindler house pink, she painted over the concrete, she painted over the redwood beans."

Stephen Prina at Seccession, Vienna
"As He Remembered"
It May 27 – August 21, 2011

Schindler images taken from RM Schindler, The Gingold Commissions, a publication by Los Angeles Modern Auctions, and Reform Gallery, and Michael and Gabrielle Boyd

Go to LAMA Auctions here...