Ella Pruitt

How NOT To Use A Chair

Class of: 2025

Major: Strategic Design and Management BBA

Medium: Photography

Faculty: Vivian Babuts

Prompt: Create a series that explores medium or artistic processes that relate to discoveries in previous bridge projects. Project must be at least three pieces in the series all containing similar mediums and techniques to create a cohesive final product. Pieces must also be tied together by an investigation you are engaging in of your choosing.

In this piece I wanted to investigate the purpose and societal understanding of objects. In the photographs, I use my model to fluidly relate and showcase varying relationships to a chair, all not fulfilling its intended use. The model plays with space and progression to display their intimate relationship with this object that is often not thought deeply about or deconstructed. I am fascinated by old photography of experiments and documentation of inventions and systems and wanted to show some reference to that within my piece as well. My piece also shows reference to photographer Francesca Woodman in the way that I wanted to replicate her unexpected black and white imagery that also demonstrates an experimentation with cropping, contrast, dramatic posing, and eerie tone. Furthermore, this piece I feel showcases a series well in the way that each photograph out of the twelve play and relate to one another. Some pieces are similar in shapes and composition while others are placed next to images that show deep contrast in posing and positioning of the chair. Another major part of this work for me was the practice of simplicity. Often with my work I am known to go over the top with detailed and maximal elements. I wanted to exemplify my skill of restraint by allowing two subjects, the model and the chair, to dance in the open space. I can see myself continuing this concept far into the future by displaying different objects outside of their predisposed utilitarian role in human society.