Alexander Girard (1907 – 1993) American interior, & Textile designer

Alexander Girard

Alexander Girard (1907 – 1993) was a man of many design talents. He trained as an architect, and he practised across disciplines—making furniture, designing interiors, patterning wallpapers. Girard is perhaps best known for Herman Miller’s head of textiles, a title he carried from 1952 to 1973.

He is often considered one of the 20th century finest graphics and textile artists and an extensive collector of the works of other artisans.  His work, particularly in textile design, was influenced by his vast collection of folk art.

Biography

In Florence, Rome, London, Paris, and New York, he worked in architecture offices. He opened an office in Florence in 1930. He opened an office in Detroit in 1937. He produced interiors for Ford and Lincoln automobiles in 1943 and 1946, respectively.

He worked as a colour consultant between 1951 and 1952 at the General Motors Research Center in Detroit, Michigan (designed by Eero Saarinen). He started designing textiles for Herman Miller in Zeeland, Michigan, in 1952. Under design director George Nelson, he became director of Herman Miller’s fabric division in 1952. For Herman Miller, he produced upholstery fabrics and casement products and exuberant, bright, large-patterned prints.

Sample of Work

He opened an office in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 1953. He designed the Braniff Airlines corporate identity graphics software in 1965 and the interior of film director Billy Wilder’s home in Los Angeles in 1957. Interiors for the La Fonda del Sol restaurant in New York in 1960 and the L’Etoile restaurant in New York in 1966 (both created by Knoll).

His extensive collection of folk art influenced his work, especially in the field of textile design. He founded the Girard Foundation in Santa Fe in 1961, which houses an international collection of toys and related items.

Exhibitions

Italian Pavilion and Florentine Artisans Guild interior-design model rooms at 1929 “Exposicion Internacional de Barcelona”; 1950 “Design for Modern Use, Made in the USA” travelling exhibition to Europe organised by New York Museum of Modern Art; 1968 “El Encanto de un Pueblo” exhibition at 1968 “Hemisfair 68,” San Antonio, Texas He was appointed Honorary Royal Designer for Industry in London in 1965.

Alexander Girard works at our partner stores

Sources

Byars, M., & Riley, T. (2004). The design encyclopedia. Laurence King Publishing.

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    Kavanaugh worked for General Motors as a stylist, primarily designing exhibitions to demonstrate autos and creating displays, model kitchens, and interiors. She was one of the company’s first female designers, called the “Damsels of Design” by design director Harley Earl. Read More →

  • Eames Chair Review: We Tested the Lounge Chair and Ottoman

    Eames Chair Review: We Tested the Lounge Chair and Ottoman

    First developed by lifelong couple and design partners Charles and Ray Eames in 1956, the lounge chair was the duo’s interpretation of a 19th-century club chair—designed to resemble a worn first baseman’s mitt and made of high-quality materials like supple leather, wood veneer, and cast aluminum.Read More →

  • Keith Haring Mural – Collingwood, Australia

    Keith Haring Mural – Collingwood, Australia

    Those who have an interest in the art world will instantly recognize this Melbourne wall mural as the work of Keith Haring. Haring was born in 1958 and was known for being one of the main figures who brought street art into the mainstream sphere. His social activism and philanthropic values made Haring an iconic character and his murals are just one legacy he left behind. Read More →

  • Richard Schultz (1930 – 2021) American sculptor and furniture designer

    Richard Schultz (1930 – 2021) American sculptor and furniture designer

    In 1951, he became a member of Knoll’s design development group. Initially, he collaborated on the wire Diamond sitting collection with Harry Bertoia. Schultz designed the Petal table in 1960, steel-wire lounge chairs in 1961, and outdoor Leisure Collection seating and tables in 1966 for Knoll. He designed a 1981 collection of outdoor furniture while pursuing his passion for the outdoors.Read More →

  • Paul Howard Manship (1885 – 1966) – American Sculptor

    Paul Howard Manship (1885 – 1966) – American Sculptor

    Paul Howard Manship was an American Sculptor. He was influenced by Hindu and Buddhist Indian Sculpture. He began his artistic education at the St. Paul School of Art in Minnesota, and he attended the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts before moving onto New York City’s Art Student League. Throughout his subsequent career, he created more than 700 sculptural pieces in stone and marble.Read More →

  • Best Amateur Living Space: The Hunter Greenhouse – Catskills Mountains

    Best Amateur Living Space: The Hunter Greenhouse – Catskills Mountains

    The winner of the 2018 Remodelista Considered Design Awards Best Amateur Living/Dining space is Ely Franko, for his project  The Hunter Greenhouse  in the Catskills. His project was chosen as a finalist by guest judge  Stephen Alesch , who had this to say: “What a perfect little hideout—full of surprise and compact good energy!Read More →

  • Wharton Esherick (1887 – 1970) American Sculptor and Furniture Designer

    Wharton Esherick (1887 – 1970) American Sculptor and Furniture Designer

    As a result, his sculptural furniture and furnishings are his most well-known works. For his leadership in designing non-traditional designs and supporting and inspiring artists/craftspeople by example, Esherick was dubbed the “dean of American artisans” by his peers during his lifetime. Esherick’s impact can still be apparent in contemporary artisans’ work, especially in the Studio Craft Movement.Read More →

  • A Totally Custom, Teeny Tiny Prison Bus Is Now a Mobile Home

    A Totally Custom, Teeny Tiny Prison Bus Is Now a Mobile Home

    Ben and Meag Poirier (Ben and Meag aren’t the first (or, for that matter, the last) couple to turn a bus into a modest mobile home.Read More →

  • Lorinda Epply (1874 – 1951) American ceramicist

    Lorinda Epply (1874 – 1951) American ceramicist

    She attended the Cincinnati Art Academy and Columbia University in New York, where she studied ceramics.Read More →

  • Alexis Kirk (1936 – 2010) American Jewellery Designer

    Alexis Kirk (1936 – 2010) American Jewellery Designer

    Kirk self-identified as Armenian despite being born in Los Angeles and raised in New England. One of his Armenian ancestors, Vemian, was a jeweller to the Turkish court. Some of his works are on display at Istanbul’s Topkapi Museum. His grandfather worked for Lalique Glass in Paris as a chief artist.Read More →

  • Ini Archibong’s debut collection for Sé explores delicacy and strength

    Ini Archibong’s debut collection for Sé explores delicacy and strength

    The series, also known as Collection IV by the brand, was released over a two-year period. It is the Nigerian American designer’s first collaboration with Sé and his most extensive furniture collection to date.Read More →

  • Dorothy Draper (1889 – 1969) American interior designer

    Dorothy Draper (1889 – 1969) American interior designer

    Dorothy Draper (1889 – 1969) was an American interior designer. She was born in Tuxedo Park, New York. Draper’s upper-crust upbringing, Tuxedo Park was one of the first gated communities in the United States. Dorothy’s parents were part of an old New England family with longstanding social connections. Dorothy’s childhood was spent playing in high-ceilinged ballrooms.Read More →

  • Donald Deskey (1894 – 1989) an American industrial, furniture and interior designer

    Donald Deskey (1894 – 1989) an American industrial, furniture and interior designer

    Donald Deskey was an American industrial, furniture, and interior designer. He was born in Blue Earth, Minnesota. He was professionally active in New York. He may have lacked the European sophistication and architectural training of his friend Paul Frankl. However, he created a uniquely American modern style that combined streamlining with French Art Deco taste.Read More →

  • Naeem Khan Indian American Fashion Designer

    Naeem Khan Indian American Fashion Designer

    Naeem Khan is an Indian-American fashion designer who has dressed First Lady Michelle Obama, Queen Noor of Jordan, and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, in his ornate and intricately detailed gowns.Read More →

  • What was the Purpose of Saloon Doors? 👩‍🌾

    What was the Purpose of Saloon Doors? 👩‍🌾

    People may want to instal saloon doors for a variety of reasons. These doors are not weatherproof, but they serve as a symbolic barrier that urges people to pause before entering a building, room, or area. The clear view above the doors allows individuals on both sides to see what’s going on, which can be pretty helpful, and the swinging, the handle-free design will enable people to open the doors without having to use their hands.Read More →

  • Edenbrook Lynnwood Upholstered ♥︎ Loveseat with Square Arms

    Edenbrook Lynnwood Upholstered ♥︎ Loveseat with Square Arms

    A square arm design with buttonless tufting, delicate piping, and bolster throw pillows to create a comfortable couch with a contemporary feel to class up your living space.Read More →

  • Rules For Picking a Coffee Table (+ 105 of Our Favorites for Every Space)

    Rules For Picking a Coffee Table (+ 105 of Our Favorites for Every Space)

    The coffee table is the centrepiece of the room. So useful, yet so often overlooked. Sofas get all the attention in the living room, and they certainly keep us comfy. The coffee table, on the other hand, is the living room’s workhorse.Read More →

  • Nocturne, model 1186 designed by Walter Dorwin Teague

    Nocturne, model 1186 designed by Walter Dorwin Teague

    Standing over four feet tall, this towering console of satin chrome and mirrored cobalt glass is a commanding example of the styling of items to meet the Machine Age ideal of the 1930s. The Nocturne radio, built by Walter Dorwin Teague, one of the premier industrial designers of the 1930s, is one of the most striking manifestations of the merger of art and technology. Read More →

  • Petipoint Iron with Wings | Design Object

    Petipoint Iron with Wings | Design Object

    Streamlined aesthetics were applied to various household appliances, especially irons, where evocations of efficiency and speed appeared to ease a hot and often unpleasant domestic labour. Read More →

  • Ruth Reeves (1892 – 1966) American Textile Designer

    Ruth Reeves (1892 – 1966) American Textile Designer

    Her works were influenced by current innovations in France, such as Cubism, when she returned to the United States in 1927. The American Designers’ Gallery in New York hosted Reeves’ debut exhibition, which featured textiles. Read More →

  • Boris Kroll (1913 – 1991) American Textile Designer

    Boris Kroll (1913 – 1991) American Textile Designer

    In 1938, he founded Cromwell Designs, which began by weaving Modern furniture fabrics on a handloom with a bathtub for dying yarns. He began employing power looms in 1939. Boris Kroll Fabrics, New York, was founded by him in 1946. Cotton and novelty spun rayon was used.Read More →

  • Lisa Krohn (b.1963) American Industrial Designer

    Lisa Krohn (b.1963) American Industrial Designer

    Lisa Krohn studied three-dimensional form with Rowena Reed Kostello, New York, between 1985 and 1986. From 1985 to 1985, she studied art history and visual arts at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. From 1988 to 1988, she was a student at the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.Read More →

  • Charles Gwathmey (1938 – 2009) American Architect & Designer

    Charles Gwathmey (1938 – 2009) American Architect & Designer

    He was the son of American painter Robert Gwathmey and photographer Rosalie Gwathmey, and was born in Charlotte, North Carolina. Charles Gwathmey studied architecture at the University of Pennsylvania. Read More →

  • Peace Poster by Luba Lukova

    Peace Poster by Luba Lukova

    Peace was first published as Lukova’s visual commentary on the Op-Ed page of The New York Times, and later the artist reinterpreted it as a serigraph poster. Arguably one of Lukova’s most well known and most copied images, Peace asks a question: do we protect peace by creating endless wars? Read More →

  • The Origin of the Chinese Takeout Container — Moss and Fog

    The Origin of the Chinese Takeout Container — Moss and Fog

    Chinese takeout has a long history in the US, and the iconic Chinese takeout container is pretty much synonymous with it. 🥡🥡🥡Read More →

  • Muffy VanderBear Portrait Chair

    Muffy VanderBear Portrait Chair

    Barbara Isenberg of New York inspected store inventories of soft toys in the mid-1970s and found them deficient. Isenberg wanted a teddy bear for her small kid that had the same quality, charm, and cozy textures as the ones she remembered from her youth. Read More →

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Maya Romanoff American textile designer – Encyclopedia of Design

Maya Romanoff was an American Textile Designer. He studied at the University of California at Berkeley. When he saw tie-dyed t-shirts at Woodstock Music Festival in 1969, Maya Romanoff discovered the magic of dying t-shirts. His profound fascination with colours and fabric led him to start the Skokie Corporation, a business that has grown into $18 million company known for its handmade wall coverings.

Ross Franklin Littell (1924 – 2000) American textile and furniture designer – Encyclopedia of Design

Ross Franklin Littell (1924 – 2000) was an American textile and furniture designer known for his practical, innovative, and minimalist style as part of the Good Design movement of the 1950s. He was born in Los Angeles. He graduated from Pratt Institute in New York with a degree in industrial design after serving in the military.

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