Plastic, plywood, play. The fertile, curious minds of Charles and Ray Eames invented the modern American furniture vocabulary. Along with other visionaries like George Nelson, the Eameses brought new materials, new processes, and a new attitude to interior design. And they often did it by playing with form and structure in an inventive, childlike way. Charles encouraged experimentation among his staff, saying that he wanted "to have people working on useless projects. These have the germ of new concepts."
The introduction, in 1946, of their Molded Plywood Chairs—with their light weight, compound curves, and streamlined visual profile—changed furniture design and manufacturing forever. And the Eames team put what they learned from that project into the design of their Lounge Chair and Ottoman, perhaps the icon of modern American design. Whether taking their inspiration from toys, surfboards, or a new process they developed for making plywood splints during World War II, Charles and Ray Eames never stopped innovating and making the world a more beautiful, comfortable, and interesting place.
The Eames Office
Santa Monica, California
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