Rare Paul Evans for Directional Bar Suite with Barstools in Sculpted Bronze
Paul Evans for Directional, dry bar with pair of barstools from the Bronze series, epoxy bronzed resin over steel and laminate, slate, reupholstered mohair, United States, circa 1975
This rare set is designed by Paul Evans for Directional and contains a bar furnished with two shelves and a pair of swivel stools reupholstered in a natural light blue mohair. Evans employed the technique of Sculpted Bronze to create the distinctive forms evident in this bar suite. The appearance is reminiscent of stalagmite known for its rugged and jagged texture. This approach to metalworking allowed for the intricate sculpting and shaping of bronze, resulting in the unique aesthetic qualities of Evans' design.
The bronze series was introduced by Evans in 1964 at Directional, with production being a blend of traditional craftsmanship, spontaneous artistry, and experimental technology. To create the pieces, Dorsey Reading fashioned a plywood base shape which was then coated with epoxy and sprayed with bronze using a technique adapted from shipbuilding. In certain instances, Evans and Reading added more bronze mixed with epoxy and sandblasted it onto a frame using sterilized play-box sand. Alternatively, fragments of steel "rock," hammered leftovers from the previous day, were affixed to the epoxy for a sculptural effect. Evans' PE100-200 Bronze series ultimately became Directional's most enduring and best-selling collection.
Paul Evans (1931-1987) was among one of the most important American Studio Craft Movement members. Together with artists such as Wharton Esherick and George Nakashima, he helped to make the Philadelphia region a prominent center for the Studio Craft in the late 1960s. Born in Newton, Pennsylvania, Evans studied at a few different institutions such as the Philadelphia Textile Institute, the Rochester Institute of Technology, School for American Craftsman, and the Cranbrook Academy of Art. Eventually, he was drawn to New Hope, Pennsylvania, in 1955 where he collaborated and shared a showroom with Phillip Lloyd Powell until 1966. Powell’s woodwork and Evans' metal craftsmanship combined into a creative partnership. During this period, he started to create furniture with metal and sculpture by which he manipulated materials to achieve expressive surface effects. In 1964, Evans started working for the Directional Furniture company where he pursued a new phase of his career. Directional offered him new opportunities for selling his work throughout the US and he continuously introduced new lines. However, his line proved to be too expensive and by the end of the seventies, he ended his relationship with the company. It was also throughout the seventies that Evans started to replace these crusty, textured surfaced, that were patinated with paint and acid, with dazzling, reflective metal surfaces that were sometimes mixed with woods. Evans’ oeuvre has an impressive size especially when regarding all pieces were handmade. On March 6, 1987, the artist shut down his business and, unfortunately, died the next day due to a heart attack.
Dimensions of the bar: listed on the page
Dimensions of the chair: H 105 x W 53 x D 55 in cm. Seat Height: 73 cm
H 41.33 x W 20.87 x D 21.65 in cm. Seat Height: 28.74 cm
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