With its fluid lines and sculptural beauty, the Executive Armchair is one of Saarinen's most popular and acclaimed designs. Winner of the Museum of Modern Art Award and the West Germany Federal Award for Industrial Design in 1969, the chair brings classic style to any environment. Moulded to follow the flow of the body, the chair is exceptionally comfortable and has a gentle recline for maximum relaxation. The finely crafted frame flexes in response to the weight of the body to offer ergonomic support where needed. The interesting cut out section adds a sophisticated aesthetic, and also allows for increased airflow along the back. Upholstered in luxurious cashmere, the chair has tubular steel legs, which are fitted with shock mounts to prevent jarring motions.
In the 1930s, Eero Saarinen met Charles Eames at Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan, USA. Both men were interested in exploring new materials and techniques for designing furniture and they forged a partnership. This collaboration resulted in them submitting moulded plywood chairs and modular storage units to the MoMA-sponsored 1940 Organic Design in Home Furnishings competition. The sculptural lines of their chair designs later influenced Saarinen's much more luxurious Executive Armchair. Created in 1950, the chair was originally made from fibreglass, but was updated to polyurethane to increase its flexibility.
1917 (United States)
American architect and furniture designer, Florence Knoll Bassett was born in Michigan in 1917. She studied under Mies van der Rohe and Eliel Saarinen, before becoming a protégé of Eliel’s son, Eero Saarinen. In 1946, Florence married Hans Knoll and formed Knoll Associates, which worked to revolutionise interior space planning. They believed in “total design”, which embraced architecture, manufacturing, interior design, textiles, graphics, advertising and presentation. Florence’s application of these design principles to solve space problems transformed the standard practices of the 1950s and is still widely used today. For her outstanding contributions to architecture and design, Florence Knoll was accorded the National Endowment for the Arts' prestigious 2002 National Medal of Arts.
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