|Bellini, Mario ||Bellini modern furniture by Mario Bellini|
|Berlin, Ragna ||Berlin modern furniture by Ragna Berlin|
|Bertoia, Harry ||Bertoia modern furniture by Harry Bertoia|
|Bill, Max ||Bill modern furniture by Max Bill|
|Bo Bonfils ||Bo Bonfils furniture by Bo Bonfils|
|Bonetto, Rodolfo ||Bonetto modern furniture by Rodolfo Bonetto|
|Bonfils, Bo ||Bonfils modern furniture by Bo Bonfils|
|Bouroullec, Erwan ||Bouroullec modern furniture by Erwan Bouroullec |
|Bouroullec, Ronan and Erwan ||Bouroullec modern furniture by Erwan and Ronan Bouroullec|
|Bouroullec, Ronan ||Bouroullec modern furniture by Ronan Bouroullec |
|Brauer, John ||Brauer modern furniture by John Brauer|
|Breuer, Marcel ||Breuer modern furniture by Marcel Breuer|
|Brodmann, Alfred ||Brodmann modern furniture by Alfred Brodmann|
|Bruno Munari ||Bruno Munari furniture by Bruno Munari|
|Bruno Ninaber van Eyben ||Bruno Ninaber van Eyben furniture by Bruno Ninaber van Eyben|
|Burhans, Alexander ||Burhans modern furniture by Alexander Burhans||
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B for Harry Bertoia Harry Bertoia was an Italian-born artist and modern furniture designer.
At the age of 15 he traveled from Italy to Detroit to visit his older brother, however he chose to stay and enrolled in Cass Technical High School, where he studied art and design and learned the art of handmade jewelry making. In 1938 he attended the Art School of the Detroit Society of Arts and Crafts, now known as the College for Creative Studies. The following year in 1937 he received a scholarship to study at the Cranbrook Academy of Art where he encountered Walter Gropius, Edmund N. Bacon and Ray and Charles Eames for the first time.
Opening his own metal workshop in 1939 he taught jewelry design and metal work. Later, as the war effort made metal a rare and very expensive commodity he began to focus his efforts on jewelry making, even designing and creating wedding rings for Charles and Ray Eames and Edmund Bacon's wife Ruth. Later in 1943, he married Brigitta Valentiner, and moved to California to work with Charles and Ray for the Evans Product Company. Evans provided technical work for airplane and medical equipment. Bertoia was also drawing training manuals. At this point they began to experiment with molded plywood under the auspices of their Plyformed Products Company, which was later bought out by Evans. With Eero Saarinen they developed a method for making molded plywood splints that would later evolve into processes for designing furniture. Bertoia remained as part of their staff, working on a variety of projects. Three years later he split with the Eames, concerned that his work was not receiving due credit, and preferring to work with metal rather than wood. In the same year he finally became a US citizen.
In 1950, he moved to Pennsylvania, to established a studio, and to work with Hans and Florence Knoll. (Florence was also a Cranbrook Graduate). During this period he designed five wire pieces that became known as the Bertoia Collection for Knoll. Among them the famous 'Diamond chair' a fluid, sculptural form made from a molded lattice work of welded steel.
In Bertoia's own words, "If you look at these chairs, they are mainly made of air, like sculpture. Space passes right through them."
They were produced with varying degrees of upholstery over their light grid-work, and they were handmade because a suitable mass production process could not be found. Unfortunately, the chair resembled an Eames chair so closely that Herman Miller, Eames' distributor, took Knoll to court on the grounds that they were taking wrongful credit for a bent-wire technique owned by the Eames. Herman Miller eventually won and gave Knoll a license to produce the chairs, but knowing that the Eames and Bertoia worked closely for so long, the "genealogy" of inspiration seems difficult and maybe even unnecessary to pin down.
Harry Bertoia by Harry Bertoia
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