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Genius: Full Frontal Coffee Table

Sebastian Errazuriz and Ross Bleckner, Body of Work. Courtesy Cristina Grajales.

At Design Miami, I discovered a coffee table (pictured above) like none I’d seen before. Chilean born, New York-based artist and designer Sebastian Errazuriz teamed up with artist Ross Bleckner to show his $250,000 full-frontal coffee table in Cristina Grajales Gallery’s booth at Design Miami.

Errazuriz conceived the white coffee table in the form of a traditional artist flat-file. The table fits four large, framed paintings, and each can be moved to the top of the table or can be taken out and hung as a normal artwork on the wall. Errazuriz enlisted Bleckner, his former professor and friend, to create two tables, each holding four works painted on high-resolution, life-sized naked photographs of the artists. As you remove the paintings, the tables unveil the artists’ naked bodies, which are photographed lying flat as if on an autopsy table.

Studio View

Sebastian Errazuriz said: “I believe as artists and designers we have the responsibility to question the structures that categorize our pre-established notions of art and design. The tables are beautiful and would definitely look great in a living room; but at the same time, they are truly mysterious and feel almost like two white, floating coffins. Ross’s flowers painted over the photos feel really powerful, almost like a father burying his dead son.”

Ross Bleckner and Sebastian Errazuriz in front of the panels

The work blurs the line between decorative furniture and contemporary art, and in fact, because of the rules delineating Design Miami from its parent Art Basel Miami Beach, the panels could not be hung on the walls alongside the table. To find the piece, titled Body of Work, visit Cristina Grajales Gallery.

Sebastian Errazuriz looking at a high-resolution, life-sized naked photograph of himself.

Behind the Genius of Sebastian Errazuriz

Born in Santiago, Chile and raised in London, Errazuriz studied in Washington, Edinburgh, and Santiago and received an MFA at New York University. At age twenty-eight, Errazuriz and the Campanas were the only living South Americans to be auctioned at Sotheby’s Important 20th Century Designs. Based in New York and with offices and workshops in Santiago, Errazuriz is currently preparing public art installations for New York, Madrid and Santiago. As a designer, he is creating products for clients ranging from the design shop of the Museum of Modern Art in New York to private commissions and interiors.

Highlights:

Sebastian Errazuriz, Memorial of a Concentration Camp. Santiago, Chile 2006. Courtesy the artist

In 2006, Errazuriz planted a magnolia tree in the center of Chile’s National Stadium, where in 1973 Pinochet imprisoned, tortured, and killed thousands of political prisoners. He then enlisted the national soccer team to play a scrimmage in front of 20,000 people.

Sebastian Errazuriz, Do it Right (Clean Suicide), Americana series, 2008, perforated helmet and firearm. Courtesy the artist

Do It Right plays with a helmet’s structural properties, designed to contain the brain in case of a huge blow. In this case he inverted the concept: the helmet has a perforated side and a real gun permanently attached so that the suicidal person can put the helmet on, close the visor, and shoot his brains out.

Sebastian Errazuriz, Zipper Dress (Duchamp series), 2005, 120 zippers. Courtesy the artist

This dress can be configured into almost any style or garment using its 120 zippers.

Sebastian Errazuriz, Coke Slab. Stainless Steel. Courtesy the artist

Sebastian Errazuriz came up with the idea for Coke Slab while watching his friends do lines of cocaine. The act felt wrong, but pragmatically, not morally. “I thought [Coke Slab] might make the whole process a lot easier,” he explained. With four linear slots embedded in the steel, the Coke Slab allows the “user” to create four perfect cocaine lines by simply swiping the drug over the slots. GREY AREA recently showed the Coke Slab at the Bass Museum.

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Comments

  1. Brilliant post. Genius.

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