Friday, May 15, 2009

MCM Furniture Friday - Harry Bertoia

Italian sculptor, university lecturer and furniture designer Harry Bertoia displayed a unique stroke of genius with his patented Diamond Chair for Knoll International in 1952. Bertoia was an inventor of form and an enricher of furniture design with his introduction of a new material: he turned industrial wire rods into a design icon. Educated at Detroit Technical High School, the Detroit School of Arts and Crafts and Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, Bertoia taught metal crafts at Cranbrook. He worked with Charles Eames to develop his signature molded plywood chairs. Eero Saarinen commissioned him to design a metal sculptured screen for the General Motors Technical Center in Detroit. His awards include the craftsmanship medal from the American Institute of Architects, as well as AIA’s Gold Medal.

Baby Hairy Bertoia via Genius Jones

Trivia: Bertoia was the sculptor commissioned to create the Marshall University fountain in Huntington, West Virginia, to honor the university's football team in the wake of the plane crash that killed them on November 14, 1970.

He had a son and two daughters, a grandson and two granddaughters, and two great grandsons so far. Half of his offspring are artistic.


Raina said...

Fab post! I did not know that bit of trivia. I've learned my "something new" for the day. I can go back to bed.

erin@designcrisis said...

I didn't know Bertoia designed all those other fab finds... he was truly a talented dude.

ps: do you think you could get the price down on that house I like? If the sellers would knock about 500k off, I *might* be able to swing it ;)

Plush Palate said...

wow! I'm drooling! Especially over the first two!

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