The Flock of Butterflies Clock (1955) is one of more than 150 clocks designed by George Nelson Associates for the Howard Miller Clock Company, which sold them from 1949 into the 1980s. Nelson Associates, first launched as a studio by George Nelson in 1947 in New York City, employed some of the most celebrated designers of the time, including Irving Harper, Don Chadwick and John Pile, all of whom contributed to the clocks. Until its closure in the mid-1980s, the company designed a range of products for many clients, including Herman Miller, Inc., which was established in 1923 by Howard Miller’s brother-in-law, D.J. De Pree. A bit of family history: De Pree also founded the Herman Miller Clock Company in 1926 but turned it over in 1937 to Howard, who renamed it. As for the identity of Herman Miller, he was Howard’s father and De Pree’s father-in-law. The Miller companies are not affiliated but stand across the street from one another in Zeeland, Mich. The Flock of Butterflies Clock appeared in the original Miller brochure as Model 2226. This is an authentic Nelson Clock, produced by Vitra Design Museum. Uses one AA battery (included). Made in Poland.
Possessing of one of the most inventive minds of the century, George Nelson is one of those rare people who can envision what isn't there yet. Nelson himself has described his creative abilities as a series of "zaps" flashes of inspiration and clarity that he was able to turn into innovative design ideas.
One such "zap!" came in 1942 when Nelson conceived the pedestrian shopping mall detailed in his "Grass on Main Street" proposal. Soon after, he pioneered the concept of built-in storage with Storagewall, a system of storage units that rested on slatted platform benches. The first modular storage system ever, it was showcased in Life magazine and caused an immediate sensation in the furniture industry. Read more >