For our second ever Chair Files, we asked our Asian Art Director, Kendal Parker, to choose the chair (or chairs, as it turns out) that she's eyeing in our Holiday Gallery Auction. Kendal comes by her expertise in Asian Art honestly, having worked with the Asian collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and lived in Asia for a number of years. After her expat years, Kendal returned to her hometown of Chapel Hill to raise her three young boys.

For her Chair File, Kendal chose a Pair of Mahogany Campeche Armchairs that many of her colleagues are also coveting.
LLA:Where did your interest in Asian Art come from?

KP: Oh gosh. I get asked that a lot. So, my dad is a scientist and he traveled and had colleagues all over the world. I think that all the things he would bring home from his travels sparked my interest. I also took Asian Art in college, and really liked it. It started with Indian art - the iconography reminded me of the Greek Orthodox icons that I grew up with. Then I went to Japan between undergrad and graduate school and totally fell in love with it.

LLA: You lived in Asia for a while, how did that influence your style?

KP: Yes, I lived in Hong Kong for seven years, and Singapore for a little less than a year. While I was there I got more in to collecting things that would be “forever” pieces, that reminded me of where I had been and what I’d seen. And in Hong Kong you can have things made exactly how you want them, which is really cool.
LLA: Why did you choose these chairs and where would you put them?

KP: They remind me of something you would see on the deck of a grand old steam ship. Or in Key West - they’ve got that classic, Hemingway look. I would put them in my front sitting room, which I just renovated. You could lounge and listen to the piano.
LLA: What’s your ideal day, when you’re not at work?

KP: My ideal day, or what my day is actually like? No, I’d go for a long walk in my neighborhood, and have a long lunch by myself. And read a book.

LLA: Those sound like things you could not do with your three children. Do you try to encourage your three boys to be interested in art?

KP: Yes, ever since they were little I’ve taken them to art shows. There would be big ones, especially when we lived in Hong Kong, and I’d let them walk me around, I wouldn’t tell them what to look at, and I encouraged them to ask questions to the gallery owners. Now sometimes if they’re having a sick day they’ll come with me to work and help me measure things and describe them.
LLA: Have you ever had any silly nicknames that stuck?

KP: Pepper. My best friend and her girls call me Pepper because they mispronounced my last name when they were little. I became Pepper Parker.

LLA: Carolina or Duke?
KP: Carolina. You shouldn’t even need to ask.