Balance, Design, Products
December 7, 2012
Here’s what we’ve been reading on the Web all week long.
1. Design Milk’s sneak peak at an upcoming addition to the Herman Miller Collection: Picnic Sofa by Industrial Facility.
2. Architect William O’Brien Jr.’s design of the Hendee-Borg House (check out the the saw-tooth roof line outside, and the various Eames pieces inside) (via Plastolux).
3. A look at the new Cleveland Museum of Contemporary Art at Co.Design.
4. The cover of Print magazine’s Regional Design Annual for its depictions of the various places and ways we work today.
5. This article on the influence of “Powers of Ten,” the experimental film by Charles and Ray Eames, at Slate.
6. The spirited workspace of the UK-based juice and fruit smoothie company Innocent, designed by Stiff + Trevillion and featured at designboom.
7. “Remembering Evelyn Ackerman, a midcentury master of craft” at the LA Times.
8. Another loss, this time in the field of architecture: Brazil’s Oscar Niemeyer (via Architizer).
9. These interiors by St Louis-based CURE Design Group at Desire to Inspire.
10. Per ArchDaily, AIA has just ranked Columbus, Indiana as the U.S.’s 6th “Most Architecturally Important City,” thanks in part to designs like this.
Featured in the photo above: Nelson Coconut Lounge Chair, Nelson Pedestal Table, and Nelson Pedestal Stool
June 21, 2011
We’re excited to announce that Herman Miller will be at the Dwell design conference this year for the first time. The design conference runs from this Friday through to Sunday. If you are in Los Angeles please do stop by the convention centre and say hello. On Friday Eames Demetrios will sit down with Dwell’s editor in chief, Sam Grawe, to discuss the Eames Aluminum group chair, its origins at the J. Irwin Miller house in Columbus, Indiana, and the enduring legacy of this now iconic design.
We’ve put together an incredible trip to the Miller House (see the slideshow below for pics from my trip to the iconic home) that you can win. It includes flights to Columbus, two nights accommodation at the Inn at Irwin Gardens and, of course, a tour of the Miller House plus an architectural tour of Columbus – a town that sports some of the best modernist architecture in the country. For more details click here.
May 15, 2011
By now you’ve read an awful lot about the Miller House, both on Lifework and Discover. Well, now we’re giving you opportunity to actually visit yourself. Just enter the getaway sweepstakes for a chance to win a weekend in Columbus, Indiana and a tour of the Miller House.
May 14, 2011
One of the exciting things about ICFF is seeing people’s reaction to new designs. When they arrive at the Herman Miller booth I love watching them sit in the chairs, stroke the mesh, squeeze the leather and generally relax. Wandering around the show is exhausting so it feels to good to offer people a bit of relief when they reach us.
What was interesting this year is we were actually going back to an original design with the re-issued Eames Aluminum Group chairs – of course, with some significant updates (technology lets us do cool things with mesh). The iconic chairs, that are so well known to Lifework readers, actually originated as outdoor furniture designed for the Miller House in Columbus, Indiana. Ha! I can hear the penny drop. So that’s why we designed the booth with the Miller House in mind. It all makes sense now. You get to see the new/old design in their natural setting – an iconic modern home with a seamless flow between indoors and out. You can read more detail about the booth and chairs here. But I thought you’d like to get a glimpse of them asap.
May 12, 2011
Columbus, Indiana certainly lives up to its reputation as home to a vast array of architectural gems. It’s a testament to the vision of local industrialist J. Irwin Miller who set up a foundation that paid the architect’s fees for public buildings. Miller (pictured above on the cover of Esquire) also provided the town with a list of architects to choose from that included I. M. Pei and Robert Stern. The legacy left by the late Miller, who died in August 2004, is extraordinary. Take Fifth Street for example – the bank was designed by Eero Saarinen while his father, Eliel Saarinen, designed the church just a block away. And that’s two of 10 significant buildings on the street.
Yesterday was spent touring the town’s buildings and with the help of Cindy Frey from the Visitors Centre we were even able to get into J Irwin Miller’s private office on Washington Street. The building, which is being sold, was completed in the late 1800s but the interior was revamped in the early 1970s by Alexander Girard and it was amazing. It’s one of the coolest workspaces I’ve seen outside of the Mad Men set! You are going to have to wait a bit for a slideshow from yesterday. What I can share with you today is the Miller House. It was so interesting to see where Miller lived and also worked. Enjoy the slideshow!
May 10, 2011
When will I learn that an overnight flight is never worth it?! After 3 hours sleep it’s hard to string a coherent sentence together but I wanted to get up just a few photos from the Miller House. It is as amazing in the flesh as it looks in the photos. The house is pristine and at the same time wonderfully lived in. There’s a great humanity and warmth to the building that I didn’t expect. I think in large part it’s due to the Miller family. You feel their energy and enthusiasm for design – and life – as you pass through exquisitely designed spaces full of the their touches. The shelves are lined with J. Irwin Miller’s books. The home office off the main bedroom has letter head with Xenia Miller’s name printed neatly across the top. The kid’s rooms (there were 5 children) are riots of color. It’s a breathtaking house and a wonderful home.
And now you’ll have to wait a bit until we get the slideshow up to see the rest of house.
May 9, 2011
This week is a busy one here at Lifework. I’ll be in Columbus, Indiana for a few days visiting the Miller House (pictured below) and then to New York for ICFF (where we’ve got lots of exciting new stories to share with you).
The Miller House history is intrinsically tied to Herman Miller. The home was commissioned by J. Irwin Miller, a wealthy industrialist, and his wife Xenia Simons Miller in 1953. Miller and his wife hired Eero Saarinen to design the house, Alexander Girard to work on the interiors and Dan Kiley to take care of the landscape architecture. Girard’s fabrics for Herman Miller feature heavily throughout the home. And it was Girard that got the Eameses involved. He saw the need for outdoor furniture and called on his friends Ray and Charles to design chairs for the verandah. A year later the Aluminum Group lounge chair was in production at Herman Miller. (More on that story later this week!)
Above: Saarinen and Eames met at Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. (Image via SMOW)
In 2000 the house was designated a National Historic Landmark. Dan Kiley, was still living and the house was still occupied by the Irwins. Today the house is open to the public for tours. In fact, the first tour is tomorrow and I will be on it – camera in hand. I’m very excited to share this beautiful house with you.
Learn more about the home at the Indianapolis Museum of Art site and the Miller House Symposium, Friday, May 20. Dwell magazine also has an excellent slideshow of the house here.