Card Room Chair #1999-1719
Blackwood card room chair; top rail and front edge of seat have canted edges in both the timber and leather; grey leather padded back and drop in seat, on angled front legs with incised lines and brass capped feet, with tapering square section back legs.
This card room chair was used in the dining and recreation block in the South Wing of the Provisional Parliament House. The building was designed to be fully self-contained for two reasons: there were limited recreational facilities in Canberra when it was built; and many parliamentarians preferred to mix with their own kind when relaxing. The South Wing contained recreational facilities including billiards rooms, card rooms, dining rooms and bars. This chair would have been used in the card rooms along with card and chess tables. This chair exemplifies the recreational furniture and facilities provided to parliamentarians and press representatives during the long periods they spent in the building. Most of these facilities catered to male tastes, as all of the original parliamentarians to serve here were men. Women were not elected until 1943. The recreational facilities also provided an important opportunity for cross-party fraternisation, and at times was the locus of significant political plotting and manoeuvres. In 1929, for example, W M Hughes used a game of billiards to divert another dissident government supporter from voting for the Bruce-Page government on a matter of confidence. The government fell for want of one vote on that occasion.
|Medium||Blackwood; timber; leather; textile; metal|
|Creator’s name||Federal Capital Commission Architects Department|