Vitra recently began working intensively with the archive of Alexander Girard, a master of colour, textile, pattern and decoration who brightened up the more austere aesthetic of classic modernism. Alexander Girard was an architect, a designer and a graphic artist. The spaces and textiles that he created came out of that unified understanding of design and a wide interest in the world – in particular the traditional folk arts of the Americas. Along with his colleagues Charles and Ray Eames and George Nelson, Girard was one of the leading figures in American design during the postwar era. While textile design was the primary focus of Girard‘s work, he was also admired for his graphic designs, furniture, exhibition and interior design which brought a sensuous playfulness to 20th century design that had been silent amongst the austere aesthetic of classic modernism.
It was with Alexander Girard in mind that Vitra was inspired to develop a series of new objects for their Home Complements Collection. In addition to the classic products, including the Eames House Bird, the Uten.Silo and the Nelson Clocks, Girard’s multi-faceted work and his enthusiasm for bright colours and lively patterns have influenced new pieces that are fun, playful, functional and connected to the classics in an intelligent way.
The Home Complements Collection features the colourful Corniches by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, the elegant and classic Rotary Trays by Jasper Morrison, the Tool Box by Arik Levy and the extended family of Alexander Girard's Wooden Dolls, featuring two new members from the animal kingdom – Cat and Dog. The full Home Complements Collection was launched this month at Maison Object in Paris.