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How Should We Live? Propositions for the Modern Interior, installation view at The Museum of Modern Art, New York.How Should We Live? Propositions for the Modern Interior, installation view at The Museum of Modern Art, New York. © 2016 The Museum of Modern Art

 

Last month we visited ‘How Should We Live? Propositions for the Modern Interior’ at The Museum of Modern Art, New York. The exhibition looks at the period of change experienced from the late 1920s to 1950s where certain radical designers, architects and manufacturers pushed the West towards a new way of living by questioning the status quo. Through presenting the era’s key examples of experimental design ‐ mined from MoMA’s extensive archive ‐ ‘How Should We Live?’ explains how experimentation in form, materials and production methods gave us the modern interior. These examples included a number of works by Eileen Gray.

 

Eileen Gray Etoile de mer Carpet MoMAEileen Gray ‐ Etoile de mer Carpet, c.1930

Gray designed handwoven rugs whose expressive tactility complemented the shimmering metallic surfaces and angular forms of her furniture. The example, woven in narrow strips combined in an irregular abstract design, reflects her preference for harmonies of ochres and browns and her experience of weaving traditions in Morocco. Before the First World War she had travelled to Northern Africa with her childhood friend Evelyn Wyld, and studied weaving and dyeing wool with natural colours. For about fifteen years, Wyld supervised Gray’s weaving workshop in Paris. – MoMA

 

Eileen Gray Chair for Tempe à Pailla MoMAEileen Gray ‐ Chair for Tempe à Pailla, c.1935

This chair was created for Tempe à Pailla, another house on the Côte d’Azur by Gray, which she designed and built after the end of her domestic relationship with Jean Badovici at E‐1027. – MoMA

Gray’s Roquebrune chair is a clear development of this design.*

 

Eileen Gray Felt Rug MoMAEileen Gray – Felt Rug, c.1928

 

The exhibition spotlights other female creatives such as Aino Aalto and Ray Eames, whose achievements have often been overshadowed, or outright claimed by their male contemporaries. For many years the iconic LC range was largely attributed solely to Le Corbusier, when actually he had been impressed by Charlotte Perriand’s use of tubular steel in furniture design and invited her to develop this side of his studio. It is only in recent years that Perriand has begun to receive just credit.

 

Le Corbusier Charles‐Édouard Jeanneret Pierre Jeanneret, Charlotte Perriand Chaise Longue LC/4 MoMALe Corbusier (Charles‐Édouard Jeanneret), Pierre Jeanneret, Charlotte Perriand ‐ Chaise Longue (LC/4), c.1928

Inspired by bentwood chairs by Thonet and recumbent doctor’s chairs, the angle of repose on this chaise longue is adjusted by sliding the chromed steel frame on its stationary base. The LC/4 was a collaborative design spearheaded by Charlotte Perriand, who had designed other furnishings in tubular steel before joining Le Corbusier’s studio. – MoMA

The LC4 design continues to be commercially produced by Cassina.*

 

Charlotte Perriand Le Corbusier Charles‐Édouard Jeanneret Pierre Jeanneret Revolving Armchair MoMACharlotte Perriand, Le Corbusier (Charles‐Édouard Jeanneret), Pierre Jeanneret – Revolving Armchair, c.1928

The modern version of this design is the LC7 chair, also produced by Cassina.*

 

After working with Corbusier, Perriand went on to live in Japan during the Second World War and brought her learnings of traditional craft and artisanal techniques into her industrial design practice. However Perriand wasn’t the only Western designer of the time to be influenced by Japanese aesthetics and MoMA highlights the connection through works by Junzō Yoshimura, Noémi Raymond and George Nakashima.

 

Charlotte Perriand Low Chair MoMACharlotte Perriand – Low Chair, c.1940

This chair was one of several products designed by Perriand while she was working as a design consultant in Japan and manufactured when she returned to France after the war.  In exploring bamboo’s potential as a building material – flexible, light, strong, inexpensive, pleasant to touch, and resistant to woodworm – Perriand revisited some of her earlier furniture designs, including a low chair with a modular, cross‐shaped base system with cylindrical legs she had designed for the UAM pavilion at the 1937 Paris exhibition. This sturdy but flexible chair was meant to be used bare (in humid or warm weather) or with removable cushions that Perriand had upholstered in traditional kimono silk fabric. – MoMA

 

Charlotte Perriand, Junzō Sakakura – Sentaku, dentō, sōzō: Nihon geijutsu tono Sesshoku (Selection, tradition, creation: contact with Japanese art), 1941 MoMACharlotte Perriand, Junzō Sakakura – Sentaku, dentō, sōzō: Nihon geijutsu tono Sesshoku (Selection, tradition, creation: contact with Japanese art), 1941

 

George Nakashima – Three‐Legged (Mira) Stool MoMAGeorge Nakashima – Three‐Legged (Mira) Stool, c.1950

 

The exhibition – now in its final week – would of course not be complete without the inclusion of experimental prototypes by Charles and Ray Eames, avant‐garde works which are now synonymous with the modernist aesthetic.

 

Charles Eames Ray Eames  Experimental Lounge ChairCharles Eames, Ray Eames ‐ Experimental Lounge Chair, c.1944

 

Charles Eames Ray Eames Prototype for Chaise Longue (La Chaise)Charles Eames, Ray Eames – Prototype for Chaise Longue (La Chaise), 1948

This chaise longue was inspired by Gaston Lachaise’s 1927 sculpture Reclining Nude and nicknamed after the artist. It did not receive a prize in MoMA’s International Competition for Low‐Cost Furniture Design because it was considered too “specialised in use” and too expensive to manufacture. However, it was highlighted by the judges, who admired its “striking, good‐looking and inventive” moulded construction. – MoMA

It took until 1990 for La Chaise to be commercially produced ‐ it’s still available today, manufactured by Vitra.*

 

How Should We Live? Propositions for the Modern Interior at The Museum of Modern Art, New York runs until Sunday 23 April 2017. 

 

*All Cassina, Eileen Gray and Vitra current production models are available through Aram Store.

 

 

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During Milan Design Week 2017 we brought out a strong team of ten who between them covered all the disparate zones sharing their discoveries along the way, which gave me more time to spend at the Salone and at showrooms in town. Here are some of my highlights:

 

Random shelves new colours MDF Italia Salone del Mobile Aram StoreThe iconic Random shelves by MDF Italia have been launched in 3 more sizes and a wide range of colours. Their Milan showroom was also impressive focussing on workspace solutions with the Minima system.

 

Miyazaki Chair Factory showroom Brera Milan 2017In the Brera district, Miyazaki Chair Factory launched stunning new designs demonstrating the company’s exception quality and attention to detail.

 

Happy Susto Vases Jaime Hayon BD Barcelona Salone del Mobile Aram Store

I cannot resist a little well executed humour in design and Jaime Hayon is often on hand to deliver. These Happy Susto Vases are for BD Barcelona.

 

Jaime Hayon Arflex Salone del Mobile Aram Store

In fact Spain’s Jaime Hayon is one of the most in demand designers of the moment as seen on Arflex’s 70’s inspired stand and many others besides. I have a soft spot for Jaime after we worked with him on his first UK solo show in The Aram Gallery back in 2006.

 

Zanotta Salone del Mobile 2017 Aram Store

Zanotta created a strong and stylish stand at the Salone combining great new products with masterly styling.

 

Cassina 90 years Herzog & De Meuron Fondazione Giangiacomo Feltrinelli Aram Store Milan 2017

Historic Italian manufacturer Cassina celebrated 90 years with a spectacular event at Herzog & De Meuron’s Fondazione Giangiacomo Feltrinelli.

For more Milan 2017 highlights visit our Facebook album or Pinterest board.

Ruth Aram

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Design Icons Month Competition Aram Store

Please note: this competition is now closed. Make sure that you sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about future competitions, promotions and exclusive offers. See below for the names of the competition winners.

In addition to our exclusive Design Icons Month offers, we are holding two great competitions.

To enter the first all you need to do is make sure you are signed up to the Aram Store mailing list by 31 March and you will be in the running to win one of these fantastic prizes:

1st prize: An E1027 side table by Eileen Gray in chrome and clear glass, worth £694 – WINNER: Warren Bramley

2nd prize: A USM trolley in a choice of three colours yellow, green or grey, worth £572 – WINNER: Craig Rice

3rd prize: A J39 dining chair by Børge Mogensen for Fredericia in oak and natural papercord seat, worth £558 – WINNER: Fiona Steane

4th prize: A classic Hang It All coat rack by Charles & Ray Eames for Vitra, worth £198 – WINNER: Felix Rauterberg

Sign-up to the mailing list here.

A winner will be picked at random on Monday 3 April and will be notified by email. We will arrange delivery to a UK address. Open to UK residents only.

 

 

Design Icons Month Competition Dezeen

Our second competition is in partnership with Dezeen and can be entered via their website, just click here and follow the instructions.

1st prize: An LC2 lounge chair by Le Corbusier, Jeanneret and Perriand for Cassina in chrome frame and green fabric, worth £3,678 – WINNER: Laura Prado

2nd prize: A Saarinen side table 41cm by Eero Saarinen for Knoll in white frame with Arabescato marble top, worth £976 – WINNER: Faith Paul

3rd prize: A Lampadina table lamp by Achille Castiglioni for Flos in orange, worth £77 – WINNER: Jonathon Behan

As with our first competition, a winner will be picked at random on Monday 3 April and will be notified by email. We will arrange delivery to a UK address. Open to UK residents only.

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Design Icons Month USM Haller

Throughout March, Aram Store celebrates the enduring appeal of authentic design icons. Following the recent change in UK law which now protects designs for 70 years after the death of the designer (bringing it in line with the rest of Europe), Aram has partnered with nine of the world’s most prestigious furniture brands to bring you some fantastic promotions. Why not start your very own design icons collection with one of these exclusive offers, which we will be posting one by one over the next few days?

Haller System - USM Modular Furniture

USM’s Haller modular furniture system was launched in 1965. It was initially developed by Paul Schaerer, an engineering graduate and grandson of the company founder, together with architect Fritz Haller. It is based on an open system principle – able to be modified in almost any way desired, it provides a great deal of adaptability to individual needs for organisation and design in both office and home environments. The number of available product combinations is almost infinite. Materials are tubular chromed frames with glass or metal sheets in fourteen colours.

Haller Storage System USM Modular Furniture

Please note: these offers have now ended. Make sure that you sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about future promotions and exclusive offers.

DESIGN ICONS MONTH SPECIAL OFFER:

Receive a USM trolley, as shown, worth up to £572 free when you spend £2,500 or more on USM.

USM Icon Trolley

This offer runs until 31st March 2017.

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Design Icons Month - Drop Chair

Throughout March, Aram Store celebrates the enduring appeal of authentic design icons. Following the recent change in UK law which now protects designs for 70 years after the death of the designer (bringing it in line with the rest of Europe), Aram has partnered with nine of the world’s most prestigious furniture brands to bring you some fantastic promotions. Why not start your very own design icons collection with one of these exclusive offers, which we will be posting one by one over the next few days?

Fritz Hansen started his company in 1872 in Copenhagen, specialising in the manufacture of small furniture parts. Manufacturing processes developed over time with steam bending so refined that in the 1930s the company was among the world leaders in the field. This led to wood lamination for which Fritz Hansen is renowned, the Ant chair of 1952 being a runaway hit as were its successors, the Series 7 and Drop chairs. The designer, Arne Jacobsen, delivered numerous other successful products for the company, in particular the Egg and Swan chairs. Fritz Hansen continues to produce its classic designs while also introducing new pieces to its collection annually.

Drop Chair 1958 Arne Jacobsen Fritz Hansen

The Drop chair was designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1958 as part of the legendary SAS Royal Hotel in Copenhagen. The Drop was originally produced along with the Swan and the Egg, but exclusively for the hotel and it was never put into standard production until a few years ago. Now available in a molded plastic version with chrome or colour-matched legs.

Drop Chair 1958 Arne Jacobsen Fritz Hansen

Please note: these offers have now ended. Make sure that you sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about future promotions and exclusive offers.

DESIGN ICONS MONTH SPECIAL OFFER:

Buy six Drop plastic chairs for the price of four – saving up to £598. Choose from six colours, place six in the shopping basket and the discount will be applied.

This offer runs from 1st March until 31st March 2017.

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Design Icons Month - The Spanish Chair

Throughout March, Aram Store celebrates the enduring appeal of authentic design icons. Following the recent change in UK law which now protects designs for 70 years after the death of the designer (bringing it in line with the rest of Europe), Aram has partnered with nine of the world’s most prestigious furniture brands to bring you some fantastic promotions. Why not start your very own design icons collection with one of these exclusive offers, which we will be posting one by one over the next few days?

Spanish Chair Borge Mogensen Fredericia

Fredericia has been producing innovative Scandinavian design since its origins in the eponymous Danish town in 1911. Designs by Nanna Ditzel, Børge Mogensen and Hans J Wegner (Spoke-back collection with Mogensen) are amongst their best known. 90% of their products are made in Denmark with the remaining 10% made in the EU. Frederica has a strong focus on sustainability – suppliers of materials are required to have documented environmental management systems in place. Fredericia furniture exemplifies the dedication to craftsmanship and beauty that Danish furniture is known for.

Spanish Chair and Pilotti Tables - Fredericia

The Spanish Chair is Børge Mogensen’s interpretation of a traditional type of chair often found in areas influenced by ancient Islamic culture – from Andalusia to northern India. The combination of solid oak and butt leather gives a strong, rustic appearance.

Please note: these offers have now ended. Make sure that you sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about future promotions and exclusive offers.

DESIGN ICONS MONTH SPECIAL OFFER:

With every order of the Spanish Chair, receive a pair of nesting Piloti side tables (2016) by Hugo Passos in a choice of finishes worth up to £717 free. Place two nesting Pilotti tables in the shopping basket along with your Spanish chair and the discount will be applied.

Pilotti Tables Hugo Passos Fredericia

This offer runs from 1st March until 31st March 2017.

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Design Icons Month - Saarinen Dining Table

Throughout March, Aram Store celebrates the enduring appeal of authentic design icons. Following the recent change in UK law which now protects designs for 70 years after the death of the designer (bringing it in line with the rest of Europe), Aram has partnered with nine of the world’s most prestigious furniture brands to bring you some fantastic promotions. Why not start your very own design icons collection with one of these exclusive offers, which we will be posting one by one over the next few days?

Knoll began in New York in 1938 when Hans Knoll its German founder strove to bring modernist design to the US. A recent architecture and design graduate and student of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Florence Schust joined the company in 1941 to work on interior projects. Hans and Florence married in 1946, becoming a powerful force in design manufacturing with Florence designing her own range of furniture and overseeing the visual rebranding of the company with graphic designer Herbert Matter. Working with some of the best modern designers of each generation – from Mies van der Rohe, Harry Bertoia, Marcel Breuer, Alexander Girard through to David Adjaye and Piero Lissoni, Knoll has more than thirty products included in the Design Collection of The Museum of Modern Art.

Eero Saarinen Dining Table 1957 Knoll International

The Saarinen Collection of dining tables, introduced by Knoll in 1957 is as popular as ever. Designer Eero Saarinen wanted to ‘tidy up’ what he saw as the ‘jumble’ of legs with traditional tables and chairs and so created the sculptural and sensuous monobloc bases that have given the collection its nickname – Tulip.

Eero Saarinen Collection 1957 Knoll International

Please note: these offers have now ended. Make sure that you sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about future promotions and exclusive offers.

DESIGN ICONS MONTH SPECIAL OFFER:

Purchase a Saarinen dining table in any finish and receive a pair of Saarinen side tables (1957) worth up to £2,744 in the same finish free.  Offer applies to oval and round dining tables 152cm diameter and above.  Side tables are 41cm diameter.  For smaller dining table (diameter 137cm and below) orders receive one Saarinen side table 41cm diameter worth up to £1,372. For dining tables in oak, maple or walnut, a white or black laminate side table will be supplied – simply place your dining table and side tables in the shopping basket and the discount will be applied.

Eero Saarinen 41cm Side Table Knoll International

This offer runs until 31st March 2017.

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Design Icons Month - Eileen Gray Bibendum Chair

Throughout March, Aram Store celebrates the enduring appeal of authentic design icons. Following the recent change in UK law which now protects designs for 70 years after the death of the designer (bringing it in line with the rest of Europe), Aram has partnered with nine of the world’s most prestigious furniture brands to bring you some fantastic promotions. Why not start your very own design icons collection with one of these exclusive offers, which we will be posting one by one over the next few days?

Eileen Gray Bibendum Chair 1926 Aram Designs Ltd

Eileen Gray was born in Ireland in 1878 and was one of the first women admitted to the Slade School of Art, London in 1898. She moved to Paris in 1902 and after training in Japanese lacquer work she quickly established herself as one of the leading designers of lacquered screens and decorative panels. During the 1920s and 1930s she became one of the leading exponents of revolutionary new theories of design. In 1973 Eileen Gray began working with Zeev Aram to bring her designs to the market, and she granted the worldwide rights to manufacture and distribute her designs to Aram Designs Ltd.

Eileen Gray Bibendum Chair 1926 Aram Designs Ltd

Named after the Michelin man, whose form this armchair calls to mind, the Bibendum chair was designed in 1926 and still looks as fresh as if it were designed today. Putting it into production in the early 70s, Miss Gray made tiny adjustments to its measurements, such was her exacting eye.

Please note: these offers have now ended. Make sure that you sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about future promotions and exclusive offers.

DESIGN ICONS MONTH SPECIAL OFFER:

Purchase a Bibendum chair in leather with either a chrome or matt black base and receive an E1027 adjustable table (1927) in any combination of finishes worth up to £694 free. Just place both items in your choice of finish into the shopping basket and the discount will be applied.

Eileen Gray E1027 Adjustable table 1927 Aram Designs Ltd

This offer runs from 1st March until 31st March 2017.

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Design Icons Month - LC4 Chaise Longue

Throughout March, Aram Store celebrates the enduring appeal of authentic design icons. Following the recent change in UK law which now protects designs for 70 years after the death of the designer (bringing it in line with the rest of Europe), Aram has partnered with nine of the world’s most prestigious furniture brands to bring you some fantastic promotions. Why not start your very own design icons collection with one of these exclusive offers, which we will be posting one by one over the next few days?

LC4 Chaise Longue Le Corbusier Perriand Jeanneret Cassina

Cassina was established in 1927 by Cesare and Umberto Cassina in Meda, Northern Italy. Much of its early products were commissions for cruise ships, high end hotels and restaurants. In 1964 the company acquired the rights to produce designs by Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret and Charlotte Perriand and the Cassina I Maestri (Masters) Collection was born. Today Cassina also manufacturers furniture from Franco Albini, Gerrit Rietveld, amongst other 20th Century design greats as well as products by some of today’s best contemporary designers.

LC4 Chaise Longue Le Corbusier Perriand Jeanneret Cassina

The LC4 chaise longue is undoubtedly one of the most iconic pieces of furniture of the twentieth century, designed by Le Corbusier in collaboration with his cousin Pierre Jeanneret and Charlotte Perriand in 1928. These are authorised numbered editions, with the designers’ signatures stamped into the frame.

LC9 Stool Charlotte Perriand Cassina

LC9 Bathroom Stool by Charlotte Perriand

Please note: these offers have now ended. Make sure that you sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about future promotions and exclusive offers.

DESIGN ICONS MONTH SPECIAL OFFER:

Receive a free LC9 stool designed in 1927 by Charlotte Perriand in any finish worth up to £894 when you buy an LC4 chaise longue in leather by Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret and Charlotte Perriand. Place both items in your choice of finish into the shopping basket and the discount will be applied.

LC9 Stool in a variety of finishes

This offer runs from 1st March until 31st March 2017.

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Design Icons Month - CH24 Wishbone Chair

Throughout March, Aram Store celebrates the enduring appeal of authentic design icons. Following the recent change in UK law which now protects designs for 70 years after the death of the designer (bringing it in line with the rest of Europe), Aram has partnered with nine of the world’s most prestigious furniture brands to bring you some fantastic promotions. Why not start your very own design icons collection with one of these exclusive offers, which we will be posting one by one over the next few days?

Hans J Wegner CH24 Wishbone Chair Carl Hansen & Son

Carl Hansen, a master cabinetmaker, founded his company in Odense, Denmark in 1908. It produced furniture to order as well as in small series before going on to work with leading Danish and international designers and architects such as Hans J Wegner, Poul Kjaerholm, Frits Henningsen and Tadao Ando. Sustainability is key at Carl Hansen & Søn with wood harvested from sustainably managed forests and treated using environmentally friendly processes.

Hans J Wegner CH24 Wishbone Chair Carl Hansen & Son

Wegner’s CH24 Wishbone chair is one of the most recognised dining chairs in modern interiors. The frame, including the distinctive crescent-shaped backrest and Y-shaped ‘wishbone’ support, is hand-crafted and painted with seven coats of lacquer. The seat is then woven by hand with 120 metres of papercord.

CH24 Wishbone Chair Standard Colours CH24 Wishbone Chair Anniversary Edition Colours
Standard Colours Anniversary Edition Colours
 Space Space 

Please note: these offers have now ended. Make sure that you sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about future promotions and exclusive offers.

DESIGN ICONS MONTH SPECIAL OFFER:

Buy six CH24 Wishbone chairs designed in 1949 by Hans J Wegner for the price of four – a saving of £1,240. Choose from 25 beech lacquered colours in the Colour Collection paired with a natural papercord woven seat. Simply place six chairs in these finishes in the shopping basket and the discount will be applied.

This offer runs from 1st March until 31st March 2017.

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