Paper doesn’t require any special equipment—“All you have to do is sit down, cut paper out, and score it, bend it, and glue it.” Designer Irving Harper has a way of making it sound easy; when you see his creations you realize it’s not. Harper is just humble and extraordinarily talented.
This fact becomes even more apparent when you reflect back on his long and distinguished career. A long-time member of George Nelson’s design office, Harper is widely acknowledged as the creator of some of the 20th century’s most iconic designs: the Marshmallow Sofa, the Ball Clock, and (something very close to our heart) the Herman Miller logo, among many well-known designs.
Much in same way he transforms paper into art, Irving Harper has always had a knack for turning humble materials and seemingly simple ideas into something special.
In Irving Harper’s hands, you can imagine any material to be versatile.
See more of Irving Harper’s paper sculptures at Why Design, a new video series featuring designers from Herman Miller’s creative network. There are eight videos in total, with a new one debuting every Monday. Next week is designer Gianfranco Zaccai.