New photo exhibit opens June 8 at Foothill Galleries
In Dad’s Chair, a new photography exhibit, will open on June 8 at Foothill Galleries. The photos, by Angelo Merendino, feature the photographer’s friends sitting in what was Merendino’s father’s favorite chair.
The public is invited to the opening reception on June 8, 6–9 p.m. The show will be on display through Aug. 13.
Merendino, 43, grew up in the North Hill section of Akron and now lives in Old Brooklyn. After his father died in May 2014, and his mother died in December of that same year, Merendino inherited the chair, which his parents had bought, along with a matching couch, in the 1950s.
"I always wondered what my dad was feeling when he sat in this chair," Merendino said. "But, in general, I think he was at peace when he was in the chair. Dad was certainly larger than life, with endless energy."
After his parents died, said Merendino, he started thinking about how they had touched other people's lives, and how those people stored memories of his parents in their minds. The chair became Merendino's way to remember as much as he could about his parents. "The chair has a symbolic meaning now," he said. "And there are many moments when I think my parents were amazing."
Merendino asks people to sit in the chair, then takes their photographs. "It's been very interesting," he said. "Some people want to lean forward, while others don't do that. But I just let people be comfortable in the chair."
Foothill Galleries, at 2450 Fairmount Blvd., Suite M291, is open Tuesday, 1–3 p.m. and 6–9 p.m.; and Thursday and Sunday, 1–3 p.m.; and by appointment. For more information, call 216-287-3064, or visit www.foothillgalleries.com.
James Henke, a Cleveland Heights resident, was a writer and editor at Rolling Stone magazine for 15 years. He is also the author of several books, including biographies of Jim Morrison, John Lennon and Bob Marley. He is on the board of FutureHeights, and is co-chair of the Heights Observer Advisory Committee.