March 20, 2012
A rare synergy occurred in 1953 in the small town of Columbus, Indiana. Three leaders of the international Modernist movement—architect Eero Saarinen, interior designer Alexander Girard and landscape architect Dan Kiley—joined to create the Miller House and Garden. Commissioned by J. Irwin Miller, and completed in 1957, the Miller House is one of the country’s most highly regarded examples of mid-century Modernist homes.
Girard, who joined Herman Miller in 1950 as director of upholstery and the newly created textile division, furnished the Miller House with pieces from the Herman Miller Collection together with his custom textiles and carpets. The residence is also a sublime example of Alexander Girard’s mastery of the artful collage—combining furniture, fabrics, accessories, and art to create unified and joyful environments.
Design, What's Up
May 25, 2011
Charles Eames famously said it’s the details that make the product. In this case, it was the Herman Miller booth at ICFF. It was an ingenious homage to the J. Irwin Miller House in Columbus, Indiana.
Booth designers Craig Bassam and Scott Fellows added two “walls” to suggest structure. Covering the booth with a fabric scrim supported by white beams softened the harsh lights of the exhibition hall while hinting at the home’s skylights. An interior wall of silk screened with bright, angular shapes abstracted the home’s storage wall. High-gloss flooring and a bed of live ground cover recalled the travertine floor and extended roof lines of the home.
In these areas, where the distinction between indoor and outdoor became blurred, Eames Aluminum Group chairs were on display. The Millers were among the first to embrace these chairs for their terraces. With new fabrics and finishes designed for the outdoors, the chairs have returned to their original intent and took an award for it. These were nestled around an Eames table with a new stone top, the effect striking and wonderfully textural.
May 16, 2011
We’ve been busy this weekend at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) in New York City. This year’s booth was inspired by the Miller House and designed by BassamFellows (check out Lifework for more on these two very soon). It’s a clear and beautiful design statement that showcases our pieces perfectly, including the new Eames Aluminum Group Chairs (which won Best Outdoor Furniture category in the Editor’s Choice Awards).
Tomorrow the show opens to the public, so stop by for a visit, check out the booth, and tryout one of the new chairs. If you can’t make it, we’ve put together a slideshow for you. Enjoy!
Photos 1-5 via Paul Warchol Photography.
May 11, 2011
The Miller House opened its doors to the public for the first time yesterday, and Cerentha Harris, of Lifework fame, and I were among the first to set foot inside. The tour was a great opportunity to experience a rare synergy between three masters: Eero Saarinen, architecture; Alexander Girard, interior design; and Daniel Kiley, landscape design.
Guided by Girard’s careful eye, the interiors showcase some of the best in mid-century modern design, including many Herman Miller classics, as well as pieces created exclusively for the Miller family. From Xenia Miller’s collections on display to the personalized dining chair cushions, the interiors also wonderfully reflect the personality of family that called the house “home” for so many years.
Whether your interest is design or architecture, or you just appreciate cool things, a visit to the Miller House is a worthwhile trip.
Also, be sure to checkout Cerentha’s post on Lifework.