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'You Are Here': Tuam chair public art project

Selection of 'Tuam' chair maquettes in various materials created in the process of 'You Are Here', the Tuam public art project by David Lilburn and Jan Frohburg. Image: Maurice Gunning

The Sligo / Tuam chair has a long tradition in local craft. This chair type has been made in the Tuam area of Co. Galway for over 100 years. Artists David Lilburn and architect Jan Frohburg realised that the chair could provide a recognisable emblem for the town. 

With the help of the National Museum, they researched the chairs,  studied their exact dimensions and the way the chairs were made. In 2016, the artists created 12 miniature Tuam chair sculptures cast in metal and red paint. 

These miniatures were put in intriguing places in the town of Tuam, often drawing attention to lesser-known areas. Detailed photographs portray the chair sculptures and show them in context alongside a large artist map which records their locations throughout the town. 

The map was created by cutting or etching images into a copper plate (known as intaglio). This intaglio print depicts important buildings and places in Tuam and highlights local folklore evoking Tuam as an ancient centre of Connacht. 

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