DWR is proud to be a member of Be Original Americas, joining Alessi, Cassina, Emeco, Flos, Fritz Hansen, Herman Miller®, Vitra and other companies in the fight against counterfeit design. Being a member means that we’re a vetted retailer of authentic goods.
This month’s Be Original profile is of Ben Watson, executive creative director of Herman Miller, the Michigan-based design and manufacturing company that produces authentic works by Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, Isamu Noguchi, Bill Stumpf, Don Chadwick and an ongoing list of top talent.
Q: Why is Be Original important?
A: Be Original stands for beliefs that are central to Herman Miller: supporting innovation and honoring design authorship. These are two of the tenets that guide everything we do. Helping others recognize, understand and support these ideas is good for design, good for the public it serves, and good for business.
Q: Name your favorite architect or building.
A: Le Corbusier’s chapel at Ronchamp is a tour de force. I have had the opportunity to visit many times, and its clarity, simplicity and humility are always overwhelming. It’s impossible to escape the emotion of the place; to not feel humbled and yet simultaneously reinvigorated. Even Corbusier’s simple holiday Cabanon, just over 13 square meters, delivers a wallop by reducing the experience to only the absolutely necessary.
Q: What are you reading?
A: The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert. It’s concise, well written and powerful.
Q: What makes you an original?
A: Our work at Herman Miller asks us to always consider our history: not as a mine for nostalgia, but as a springboard to the future. When we are unafraid to tackle the thorniest problems, and keep our beliefs about design at the center of all we do, I’m confident we can continue to do great things.
Read other Be Original profiles:
Gregg Buchbinder, president and CEO of Emeco
Christian Grosen Rasmussen, head of design at Fritz Hansen
Sandy Chilewich, industrial designer
Jessica Hicks, president of Vitra North America
Jan Vingerhoets, CEO of Flos