Charles Eames and Eero Saarinen met at Cranbrook Academy in 1936. Saarinen had just returned home from abroad and was teaching at the Academy, while Eames had accepted a fellowship at the prestigious school. During their time at Cranbrook, they collaborated on many projects, with their efforts culminating in a range of furniture that won first prize at the "Organic Design in Home Furnishings" exhibition held by the MoMA in 1941. Eames and Saarinen designed several versions of the sculptural Organic Highback Chair (1940) for the competition. However, due to manufacturing constraints, the chair never went into serial production. Exhibition curator Eliot F. Noyes wrote of Saarinen and Eames: "Their designs proposed for the first time the use of molded plywood forms for chairs to fit the human body. The jury, in awarding the prizes, decided that these designs were possible to construct, although nobody, including the technical experts present, had any very exact idea of just how it might be done." While molded plastic chairs would hit the market only a few years later, it wasn't until 2006 that Vitra and the Vitra Design Museum first produced the Organic Chair. Made in Germany.
With a slightly reclined seating position, the Organic Chair is ideal for reading.
The elongated backrest provides neck support.
Laminated seat shell; black ash legs; 100% polyamide Hopsak fabric.
Design is for living. That maxim shaped a widespread shift in design during the 1940s and 1950s. It was a revolution of form, an exciting visual language that signaled a new age and a fresh start and two of its prime movers were Charles and Ray Eames. The Eameses were a husband and wife team whose unique synergy led to a whole new look in furniture. Lean and modern. Sleek, sophisticated and simple. Beautifully functional.
Yet Charles and Ray Eames created more than a "look" with their bent plywood chairs or molded fiberglass seating. They had ideas about making a better world, one in which things were designed to fulfill the practical needs of ordinary people and bring greater simplicity and pleasure to our lives. Read more >