Seth’s Living Room Suite
Installed in front of the gallery where it is a new companion piece for Carl Skelton’s Begging Bear, artist and cartoonist Seth’s Living Room Suite includes a sofa, two chairs, and box television.
Cast in bronze, the “suite” builds on Seth’s interest in everyday places that evoke life in the 1950s – from cities and buildings to the coffee shops, hotel rooms, offices, and domestic spaces that populate his comic books and graphic novels like Palookaville, Clyde Fans, and Dominion City. Given the presence of the television in daily experience at that time as well as in his own life, the television is oversized, looming larger in his imagination. Part of a wider series of work by Seth that engages such spaces, he suggests, “They’re meant to make you think about rooms you’ve been in yourself. Maybe they’re inner rooms representing memory or even an afterlife.”
“We have all been spending more time than usual in our living rooms and in our homes,” notes Art Gallery of Guelph Director Shauna McCabe. “Seth’s sculpture acknowledges this shared experience by placing an interior space in the public realm. It also offers another important gathering place in the sculpture park and in our wider city landscape – a public living room where people can come together outside to enjoy art and each other.”
The sculpture was made possible through the support of the Canada Council for the Arts and the Guelph Community Foundation Musagetes Fund. Other public artworks by Seth include The Junkyard of Memory, a mural installed in downtown Guelph in 2016, and A Civic Dreamscape, a private commission to be installed on the Matrix Building overlooking the Trans Canada Trail and Speed River to enhance the experience of Guelph’s urban trails.
Image detail: Seth, Living Room Suite, 2021, bronze. Art Gallery of Guelph Collection
Commissioned with financial support from the Canada Council for the Arts and Guelph Community Foundation Musagetes Fund.
Seth’s comics and illustrations have appeared in The New York Times, McSweeney’s Quarterly, The New Yorker, The Walrus, and Canadian Notes & Queries. He is also the designer for several classic comics reprint series, notably collections of work by Charles Schulz, John Stanley, and Doug Wright. His artwork has been presented nationally and internationally in both group and solo exhibitions, including his most recent exhibition, A Life, All Play, developed by the Art Gallery of Guelph in 2019. Born Gregory Gallant, Seth lives in Guelph, Ontario, with his wife, Tania, in an old house he has named “Inkwell’s End.”
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