Lecture 4 : Charles and Rae Eames

Two post war American designers in the west cost were a well renown couple who were wacky, crazy and extremely innovative and set the engender for the next phase in Interior Design.

We are inventors and we should embrace design, science and maths, as good design goes beyond its aesthetics, and goes into simple function. From a young age Charles developed an interest for the mechanics and the complex working of things. Taking things apart and putting them back together. Rae on the other hand was deeply interested in abstract art qualities, found particularly in New York in around the 1940’s ad 50’s.

Although not passing through college he was still able to work along side furniture designers for his chair design in MaMon and although he won the prize for organic design home furnishings but he still felt it was not successful due to it not being able to be mass produced. From then he was hired to design plywood chairs and it was from this design he unlocked the key to mass production and bending plywood. He also designed plywood splinters for injured service men.

These two were very interested in creating designs that were both beautiful in form and material but were also affordable for the average earning man. They applied the idea of design to domestic furniture. They made designs that were no longer to suit one purpose, for instance to sit, you can sit on a box… but can you really enjoy and be comfortable with the experience.

RAR by Charles & Ray Eames for Vitra

This combines rocking and standard chair is a beautiful object on its own without its purpose. Made from formed fiber glass it was a development in stages of materials that could be used to create domestic items.

But, this power couple did not just stop at furniture design, they went into film making poem writing and really got their teeth stuck into life. This is why I believe these two people really had a good shot at what they did. They grabbed life by the horns and made the most of it, and inspired people.

They used their film making and photography skills to present their ideas in a new exciting and fragrant way. creating slides focused people onto the smaller detailed sections and allowed their minds to wonder. They called it their cabinet of curiosity and they were used in schools and presentations.

These catalogs of slides are fragmented images and the couple speak about how the mind is constantly taking in its surroundings, from emotions, colours textures vibrations, sounds temperatures, constantly trying to make sense, constantly working and functioning, and the point of this is to grab life, take in these emotions and really feel whats going on around you.. as we only get one time slot on earth, and we should all make it worth while.




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