Graffiti Artists Tackle Eames Chair

Graffiti Artists Tackle Eames Chair
Owning a work of art provides the luxury of being able to contemplate it privately, without having to trek to a museum to enjoy it amid the scrum. Yet despite Matisse's famous quote that art should be "something like a good armchair," it's rare that even a piece on one's wall can provide that level of relaxation. But now the laziest art-lovers can take comfort: 20 Eames Molded Plywood Lounge Chairs that have been painted by notable street and graffiti artists are coming up for auction this week, offering a unique opportunity to kick back and relax on top of a piece of art.

Operation Design, a New York–based nonprofit that pairs architects with public school students in order to create innovative spaces at their schools, has commissioned the artists — including to Elbow-Toe, Skewville, Matt Siren, and the mysterious Peru Ana Ana Peru — to contribute to the project. Through June 1, their handiwork is visible in the windows of fashion emporium Barneys New York at Madison Avenue and 61st Street. Interested bidders can visit Operation Design’s Web site to bid online. (As of Wednesday morning, the Elbow-Toe had only attracted a single bid, and was priced at $1,000.)

The nonprofit counts the Eames Foundation and the Eames Office among its sponsors so, yes, the artists were able to use authentic Eames chairs for the projects: there are no Design Within Reach or Ikea knockoffs here.