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What we're reading: Mies

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We're kicking off our summer reading with Detlef Mertins' amazing monograph, Mies (Phaidon). A full review will follow in a few weeks (or however long it takes to meander through 560 pages of Mies). Until then, drop us a comment to let us know what you're reading or to suggest what we should read next.

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The Farnsworth House. Photos courtesy of Phaidon.

Looking for another book to dive into? Check out our review of Cape Cod Modern (Metropolis Books).

"First of its kind," says Houston Chronicle.

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Photo by Gary Zvonkovic

The new DWR Houston Studio is now open and getting rave reviews. Sarah Rufca of the Houston Chronicle writes, "The new Design Within Reach studio in Highland Village is the first store of its kind in Texas."

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Photo by Gary Zvonkovic

She continues, "Just across from Restoration Hardware's stucco fortress of luxury in Highland Village, the two-story windows that wrap around the new Design Within Reach studio leave little to the imagination, beckoning instead with Eames chairs and Noguchi coffee tables dramatically lit by satellite chandeliers and artichoke lamps."

Stop by and see what all the excitement is about. We look forward to seeing you.

It's the Herman Miller Sale at DWR!

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Eames Lounge and Ottoman

Authentic classics by Eames, Nelson, Noguchi (all the heavy hitters) are on sale, in stock and shipping for free. Shop the Herman Miller Sale.

Highlights from Design Week: ICFF.

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Introducing the Su Stool by Nendo for Emeco.

Whether you call it NYCxD, ICFF, Wanted, Design Week or something else, New York City in mid-May is the place to see what’s happening in furniture and product design. Here are the highlights from the International Contemporary Furniture Fair.

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Su and Broom stools in the Emeco booth at ICFF.

Hello, Su! The latest launch from Emeco, the sleek and simple Su Stool (top photo) made its NYC debut at ICFF and the DWR SoHo Studio. A beautiful mix of Japanese simplicity and American craftsmanship, Su will be available at DWR in July. Also new from Emeco is the Broom Stool designed by Philippe Starck.

Continue reading "Highlights from Design Week: ICFF." »

Remembering Massimo Vignelli.

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It was with great sadness that we learned of the passing of Massimo Vignelli. The Italian architect and designer died on May 27 at 83. In recent weeks, word of his illness motivated the design community to generate a campaign of letters, to let Massimo know how much he changed the world in which we live. At DWR, we sent him a letter, which read:

We wanted to let you know how much we appreciate the contributions you’ve made – not only to the world of modern design but also to the world in general. We’re firm believers in the notion that work such as yours improves the lives of people everywhere.

Also, we thought you might like to hear what a few of our own people had to say about you.

Continue reading "Remembering Massimo Vignelli." »

Zaha Hadid gives Nube Chair top honors.

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Finding furniture that can hold its own inside a Zaha Hadid building is not an easy task. Fortunately for Vienna University of Economics and Business, the solution was found in the Nube Chair. Designed by Jesús and Jon Gasca for Stua, the Nube Chair is similar to Hadid's architecture in its play of straight and fluid lines.

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Nube was selected for the University's new Library, Learning Center and Cafe. "The Hadid project needed furniture that could be serious in one setting, and playful in the next. Nube was able to meet both requirements," says Jon Gasca.

Continue reading "Zaha Hadid gives Nube Chair top honors." »

May 24: The Most Modern Birthday.

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Alexander Girard: An Uncommon Vision closes May 28. Photo by Herman Miller.

Today is the birthday of Alexander Girard, Edith Heath, Florence Knoll and Isamu Noguchi. If it's also your birthday, you're keeping company with some of the most creative minds of the 20th century. To celebrate this day, we suggest visiting the Alexander Girard pop-up exhibition at 446 W. 14th Street in New York (closes May 28), Heath Ceramics in Sausalito, the Knoll Museum in East Greenville, or the Noguchi Museum in Long Island City.

Have you been to any of these places? If so, let us know what you think.

Highlights from Design Week: WantedDesign.

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Granit Teacup by Eva Zeisel. Photo by Kevin Shea

Whether you call it NYCxD, ICFF, Wanted, Design Week or something else, New York City in mid-May is the place to see what’s happening in furniture and product design. Here are the highlights from WantedDesign.

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Photo by Kevin Shea

Starting with the Design Within Reach booth, we debuted the Odin Table by Norm Architects, launching in September. The table was shown with the Finn Chair, also by Norm, and a new chair by Omar de Biaggio.

Continue reading "Highlights from Design Week: WantedDesign." »

Highlights from Design Week: Herman Miller.

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Upholstered Eames Chairs, Girard Wall Panel. Photo by Gwendolyn Horton

Whether you call it NYCxD, ICFF, Wanted, Design Week or something else, New York City in mid-May is the place to see what’s happening in furniture and product design. The Michigan-based company Herman Miller exhibited in a stunning space at the Standard Hotel. They also hosted a pop-up exhibition celebrating Alexander Girard (on view until May 28).

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Photo by Gwendolyn Horton

Raise your hand if you love George Nelson. Designed in 1958, his Swag Leg Desk is looking sharp with the new Mirra 2 Task Chair and a lamp by Ilse Crawford.

Continue reading "Highlights from Design Week: Herman Miller." »

Happy birthday, Marcel Breuer!

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Marcel Breuer, circa 1926.

"It's a world of possible impossibilities," said Marcel Breuer. Born on this day (or yesterday, depending on your source) in 1902, the Hungarian architect and furniture designer began his career as one of the youngest students at the Bauhaus. Passionate and curious, Breuer thrived on finding unique solutions to everyday problems. From cantilevered chairs to facades of glass to Brutalist buildings to his concept of the binuclear house (bedrooms in one wing, living/dining areas in the other, separated by an entry hall), Breuer shaped the world in which we live and continues to inspire designers today.

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Whitney Museum of Art. Photo by Ezra Stoller.

"Architecture should be anchored in usefulness," said Breuer, "its attitude should be more direct, more directly responsible, more directly social."

To celebrate Breuer's birthday, check out the building he designed for the Whitney Museum of American Art. The museum will leave this landmark building later this year to move to a new structure designed by Renzo Piano.

Four-day DWR Outlet Sale this weekend!

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Some of the inventory currently at the DWR Outlet in Secaucus, NJ.

For four days: Take an additional 20% off already drastically reduced prices at the DWR Outlet in Secaucus, New Jersey and save up to 75% off original retail. Our inventory includes overstock, customer returns and scratch-and-dent items. The floor will be restocked hourly. 

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Click here for DWR Outlet Sale location and hours. You can also shop our eBay Outlet online.

Craving culture? Exhibitions to see now.

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Charles James exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photo by Cecil Beaton. Copyright © Condé Nast

From ball gowns in New York to Ansel Adams in California to designing for disaster in D.C., there is richness to enjoy everywhere. Here are the must-see exhibitions happening around the country.

ARIZONA

Phoenix Art Museum
William H. Johnson: An American Modern

CALIFORNIA

MAK Center
Silver Lake Architecture Tour - This Weekend

The J. Paul Getty Museum
In Focus: Ansel Adams

Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Calder and Abstraction: From Avant-Garde to Iconic

Continue reading "Craving culture? Exhibitions to see now." »

Design Week NYC: WantedDesign + DWR.

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Visit our booth at WantedDesign to see new furniture collections from designers Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen and Kasper Rønn, founders of Norm Architects. While you're there, relax, read and enjoy coffee in our lounge; and catch book signings with design authors Melissa Feldman, Susan Szenasy and Peter Korn.

WantedDesign is an international design event in New York City. Now in its fourth year, this strongly curated exhibition continues to build on its reputation for being a must-see during Design Week, or NYCxDESIGN.

WHEN: May 17–19, 10am–7pm
WHERE: The Tunnel, 269 11th Ave. (at 37th Street) in NYC

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Danish invasion during Design Week: Kasper and Jonas are taking over DWR's Instagram account (look out!) to share their experiences in New York. Follow them (and us) @designwithinreach. We'll also be sharing on Twitter @DWR_Tweets and Facebook.

Portland’s modern master: Pietro Belluschi.

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Burkes-Belluschi House (1948) by Pietro Belluschi. Photo by Sally Painter.

“I was born with a natural sense of proportions, of materials, and a sense of how to go about designing,” said architect Pietro Belluschi (1899–1994), whose work is being celebrated this weekend with a six-house tour hosted by Restore Oregon.

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Ressler House (1949) by Pietro Belluschi. Photo by Drew Nasto.

Born in Italy, Belluschi came to the U.S. to study at Cornell, earning a degree in civil engineering in 1924. He took only one design class in college, but that was enough to infuse him with a love of architecture. After graduation he worked at an Idaho mine for a year, before being hired by a Portland design firm. “They gave me a job even after I told them that I’d had no experience in architecture; I had only and interest in it,” said Belluschi in an interview for the Archives of American Art's Northwest Oral History Project.

Continue reading "Portland’s modern master: Pietro Belluschi." »

Happy Birthday, Jens Risom!

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Jens Risom with his iconic lounge chair designed in 1943.

We celebrate Jens Risom every day at DWR -- and especially today, his 98th birthday. Risom designed the first chair for the company Knoll in 1941, and he's still designing today. In fact, we'll be launching his latest collection in early 2015.

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"Basically, my whole life has been in the design of pieces that make the living environment more enjoyable," says Risom. "Many designers lose sight of this. They want their work to be looked at like art. I prefer design that is neutral and not the center stage, furniture that is for people."

To the man who has brought us so much enjoyment in our living environments, we wish you a very happy birthday!

DWR PRESENTS: JENS RISOM from Design Within Reach on Vimeo.

Learn more about Jens Risom in this DWR Film.

Cape Cod Modern must-read.

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“Walter Gropius was tired.” That is the fabulous first sentence to this engaging book by Peter McMahon and Christine Cipriani. A sweeping celebration of modernism anchored by a strong sense of place, Cape Cod Modern: Midcentury Architecture and Community on the Outer Cape from Metropolis Books is a must-read for anyone interested in architecture, maritime history, artistic communities, the Cape itself, Yankee do-it-yourself determination and Thoreauvian love of the land.

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Hatch House designed by Jack Hall in 1962. Photo by Jack Hall.

McMahon and Cipriani spent seven years archiving a verbal history that was fading fast, and without their efforts this mostly unknown chapter in the history of modern architecture would’ve been forever lost. “While outer Cape Cod’s contributions to twentieth-century art, theater and literature are well known, its profusion of midcentury architecture has gone mostly unnoticed,” they write. “Ironically, this was somewhat deliberate.”

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Hatch House by Jack Hall. Photo by Gwendolyn Horton.

These small informal houses were often hidden in the woods, situated so as not to disturb the land and constructed with inexpensive, off-the-shelf materials. Many were even made with salvaged materials, a practice perfected by colonial Cape Codders who were dependent upon shipwrecks to supply them with lumber to build on these shores. “This ad hoc, improvisational quality is what sets Cape Cod modernism apart from other regional adaptations of the modern movement,” write the authors.

Continue reading "Cape Cod Modern must-read." »

Be Original: Supporting authentic design.

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Panel at previous Be Original event at DWR Miami Studio. From left: Mark Simmons, VP of Marketing at DWR; Paolo Cravedi, Managing Director of Alessi; Caroline Baumann, Director of the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum; Giulio Cappellini, Art Director of Cappellini; Odile Hainaut, Co-Founder of WantedDesign.

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.

Upcoming Be Original Americas events:

Continue reading "Be Original: Supporting authentic design." »

Help save the Pavilion.

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The Tent of Tomorrow was the centerpiece of the World's Fair. Photo by Gwendolyn Horton.

“There ought to be a university course in the pleasure of ruins,” wrote Philip Johnson in the foreword to Hilary Lewis’ fantastic book about his architecture. That pleasure, however, is mixed with pain when it comes to the current state of the New York State Pavilion that Johnson designed for the 1964 World’s Fair in Queens. Erected as an emblem of imagination and optimism for the future, the site is now in desperate need of preservation and reuse to save it from demolition by neglect.

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Book by Hilary Lewis, photo by Richard Payne.

“This thing has always been a bit of a mystery,” says Matthew Silva, co-founder of the preservation group People for the Pavilion. “It’s big and clearly important but nothing was ever happening with it.” That lack of activity drove Silva and fellow activist Salmaan Khan to learn more about the site and take action. In addition to doing work as preservationists, they have full-time careers – Silva is a schoolteacher, Khan the manager of facilities planning for the High Line – and Silva is also working on a documentary film about the project.

Continue reading "Help save the Pavilion." »

Celia Bertoia at DWR San Francisco.

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Photo by Eric Hildebrandt for DWR.

Harry Bertoia's youngest daughter, Celia, gave a fascinating talk about her father at our fabulous new space in San Francisco yesterday. The presentation and Q&A highlighted the designer's long and esteemed legacy as a sculptor and furniture designer for Knoll. To hear about upcoming Studio events in your area, join our mailing list.

 

On the market: A house fit for The King.

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Kudos to Dave Weinstein of the Eichler Network for letting us know about the Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway hitting the market in Palm Springs, Calif. Designed in 1960 by Bill Krisel, the house was rented for a year by Elvis Presley, who celebrated his honeymoon there with Priscilla in 1967. Now used as an informal museum to The King, the circular rooms are outfitted with cardboard cutouts and mannequins (whether or not they are included in the sale is unclear). Listed for $9.5 million, the 5,000-square-foot home consists of four perfect circles on three levels, and features a pool, tennis court, orchard and, naturally, a stage. It is listed with Josh Altman, who stars on the Bravo show Million Dollar Listing.

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