Charles Pfister (1938 – 1990) was an American interior and furniture designer

Charles Pfister featured image

Charles Pfister (1939 to 1990) was an American interior and furniture designer and architect. He was professionally active in San Francisco. 

Education

He studied architecture and design at, University of California at Berkeley. 

Biography

Between 1965-81, Pfister was a designer of corporate interiors in the San Francisco branch of architects Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. He became active in mass production design and was an associate partner and interior design department, director. He was known for interiors of elegant simplicity. In 1981, Pfister, James Leal, and Pamela Babey, Richard Brayton established Charles Pfister Associates in San Francisco. His extensive list of clients included Deutsche Bank in Frankfurt and Citicorp.

He produced the interiors for;

  • the 21 Club restaurant, New York
  • Square One restaurant, San Francisco
  • Grand Hotel, Washington
  • Shell central headquarters, The Hague
  • United Overseas Bank, Singapore
  • a hotel 13th-century monastery in Milan. 
Lobby, Grand Hotel, Washington DC 1987 by Charles Pfister
Lobby, Grand Hotel, Washington DC 1987 by Charles Pfister. Interior Architecture

He designed rugs for V’Soske, seating for Metropolitan and Bernhardt, and lighting for Boyd and Casella. His office furniture and accessories for Knoll included the 1975 range of clear glass ashtrays and bowls produced by Vistosi in Murano.

His 40-piece 1990 Premier Collection of residential furniture made by Baker was said· by him to owe its design to various sources, including the work of Terence RobsJohn-Gibbings ( to whom the range was dedicated), 19th-century Russia, 18th-century Sweden and ‘steamship moderne.’

He also designed case goods, seating, and tables for Baker Execu Office. In 1988, Pfister’s firm was renamed The Pfister Partnership, with offices in San Francisco and London. 

In our partner store

Charles Pfister

Sources

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

International Interior Design Association of Northern California. (2018, June 30). A glance back to the office of Charles Pfister. A Glance Back to the Office of Charles Pfister. Retrieved February 1, 2022, from https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/a-glance-back-to-the-office-of-charles-pfister-267536031.html

Kurtick, J., & Eakin, G. (1996). Interior architecture. Van Nostrand Reinhold.

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    Le Corbusier Swiss born architect designer and theorist

    Born Charles Édouard Jeanneret, Swiss-born architect, designer and theorist, Le Corbusier was one of the most influential artistic figures in 20th-century architecture, publisher of the Esprit Nouveau Modernist newspaper in 1920, author of several influential books including Vers une architecture (1923), L’art décoratif d’aujourd’hui (1925) and Les 5 points d (CIAM). He also coined the principle that ‘a machine for living in’ was the modern home.Read More →

  • Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886 – 1969) German architect and designer

    Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886 – 1969) German architect and designer

    Between 1905 and 1907, he worked as an apprentice to architect and furniture designer Bruno Paul in Berlin, where he studied wooden furniture design. He created furniture for all of his early homes, including the Werner residence.Read More →

  • Emilio Ambasz Argentine architect and designer

    Emilio Ambasz Argentine architect and designer

    Emilio Ambasz is an Argentinean who studied architecture at Princeton University from 1960 to 1965, worked at the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) in New York from 1970 to 1975 as Curator of Design arranged the landmark Italy: The New Domestic Landscape Exhibition in 1972.Read More →

  • Signet a Minimalist Table by Daniel Schofield

    Signet a Minimalist Table by Daniel Schofield

    Signet is a minimalist table created by London-based designer Daniel Schofield. Created for modern live / work, nomadic lifestyles where people might want to reconfigure there space regularly or move often. A light and strong trestle that collapses in seconds making them easy to store away and transport. Read More →

  • Massimo Vignelli designer of subway maps to corporate logos

    Massimo Vignelli designer of subway maps to corporate logos

    Massimo Vignelli and his wife Leila, an architect, were considered a husband and wife team credited with introducing restrained, European fashion and taste in America in the 1970s.Read More →

  • Ola Wihlborg Swedish industrial and product designer

    Ola Wihlborg Swedish industrial and product designer

    He took his first steps towards his career as a designer at Beckmans College of Design in Stockholm, Sweden, where he studied furniture and product design. After graduating in 2004, he began working as a freelance designer.Read More →

  • André Lurçat (1894 – 1970) French Arhitect & Furniture Designer

    André Lurçat (1894 – 1970) French Arhitect & Furniture Designer

    He joined the CIAM (Congres Internationaux d’Architecture Moderne) as a founding member in 1928. Lurcat led the commission on urbanism. His furniture and architecture of the 1920s were geometrical forms influenced by Cubism. Thonet produced his furniture for the Ecole Karl-Marx, which resembled Marcel Breuer’s twisted metal tubular furniture.Read More →

  • Henri Lancel (1912 – 1976) French Decorator & Furniture Designer

    Henri Lancel (1912 – 1976) French Decorator & Furniture Designer

    Jean Dunand, Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann, and Pierre Legrain of Groupe des Cinq were among his friends. He travelled to South America and Cuba between 1928 and 1930, working in exotic woods.Read More →

  • Louis Sparre (1866 – 1964) Swedish furniture designer

    Louis Sparre (1866 – 1964) Swedish furniture designer

    He was born in Gravellona Lomellina, Italy. He was the son of Pehr Ambjörn Sparre af Söfdeborg (1828–1921) and Teresita Adèle Josefa Gaetana Barbavara (1844–1867). His father had served as head of the banknote printing company for the Sveriges Riksbank. He spent his early childhood with his mother at Villa Teresita in Gravellona while his father was often on business trips.Read More →

  • Alfredo Simonit (b.1937) – Italian furniture designer

    Alfredo Simonit (b.1937) – Italian furniture designer

    Alfredo Simonit is an Italian designer. He was born in Romans d ‘Isonzo. Professionally active S. Giovanni al Natisone. Read More →

  • Gaetano Pesce (b.1939 ) Italian architect, designer and sculptor

    Gaetano Pesce (b.1939 ) Italian architect, designer and sculptor

    He established an office in Padua, where he became a founding member of Gruppo N in 1959. He experimented with programmed art and collaborated with Gruppo Zero in Germany, Groupe de Recherche d’Art Visuel in Paris (then known as Motus), and Gruppo T in Milan. Read More →

  • Edward William Godwin (1833 – 1886) British architect & furniture designer

    Edward William Godwin (1833 – 1886) British architect & furniture designer

    He was a city surveyor, architect, and civil engineer who worked for William Armstrong. In 1854 in Bristol, he established his practice with no notable commissions. Consequently, between 1857 and 1859, he lived in Ireland and worked with his engineer brother.Read More →

  • Giancarlo Pozzi (1924 – ) Italian Industrial Designer

    Giancarlo Pozzi (1924 – ) Italian Industrial Designer

    Pozzi’s professional career began in 1950. He worked with architect Alberto Rosselli from 1963 to 1967. From 1970 to 1974, he collaborated with Achile Castiglioni and the Ponti/Fornaroli/Rosselli Studio.Read More →

  • Relaunch of Magnus Olesen Series

    Relaunch of Magnus Olesen Series

    The 8000 series chair, designed by Magnus Olsen and first introduced in 1981, is a design classic that, in many people’s opinion, played a crucial role in defining furniture design in the 1980s.Read More →

  • Charlotte Perriand (1903 – 1999) French designer and architect

    Charlotte Perriand (1903 – 1999) French designer and architect

    Charlotte Perriand (1903 – 1999) was a designer and architect from France. Perriand’s designs are most commonly associated with furniture created in the 1920s in collaboration with Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret. Still, her contribution to design was much more critical.Read More →

  • Grethe Meyer (1918 – 2008) Danish architect, & designer of furniture & glassware

    Grethe Meyer (1918 – 2008) Danish architect, & designer of furniture & glassware

    She worked on the editorial staff of The Building Manual from 1944 to 1955. She was a crucial figure in Borge Mogensen’s research on the standardisation of consumer product sizes, and she collaborated with him frequently. They created the Boligens Byggeskabe (BB) and resund cabinet-storage systems in 1957.Read More →

  • Alfons Bach (1904 – 1999) German Industrial Designer

    Alfons Bach (1904 – 1999) German Industrial Designer

    In New York City, Bach planned the remodelling of Sach’s and the Seneca Textile Building. His work was shown at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in early contemporary industrial art shows. In Stamford, Connecticut, he created his own home in 1938. He oversaw the construction of the Ridgeway Center, one of the country’s earliest shopping malls. In the 1930s, Bach designed tubular steel furniture for the Lloyd Manufacturing Company. Until 1947, they continued to produce his works. These tubular objects are seen to constitute a link between Bauhaus and contemporary design. In 1959, he relocated to Florida. In Delray Beach, he designed the Palm Trail Plaza and the Palm Trail Yacht Club. In 1969, he was the curator of the United States display at the International Industrial Design Exhibition. He created designs for GE, Keystone Silver, Pacific Mills, and Bigelow-Samford. He was the American Designers Institute’s president.Read More →

  • Minimalist Faceted Voxel Chair By Karim Rashid

    Minimalist Faceted Voxel Chair By Karim Rashid

    The Voxel Chair is the perfect piece of architectural design for any space. Based on the Vertex chair, a former Vondom piece. It presents a unique structural shape, angular and faceted, which can only be produced by injection moulding. Due to its smartly designed shape, its weight is distributed in a balanced way. Its lightweight body makes it easy to move and arrange.Read More →

  • Collection of side tables – Michael Hilgers

    Collection of side tables – Michael Hilgers

    Designer Michael Hilgers has created a collection of side tables and coffee tables that have a unique folded steel design.Read More →

  • 9 of the Best Couches and Most Iconic Sofas

    9 of the Best Couches and Most Iconic Sofas

    If you spend your time on the same parts of the internet that we do, chances are that over the last few years you’ve seen a lot of weird and wonderful sofas that are, well, kind of hard to forget. Wondering the name of that couch that looks like a pack of dinner rolls? Or the story behind that Jabba the Hut-shaped lounge that’s fueling a whole world of furniture memes?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 →

  • Flemming Lassen (1902 – 1984) Modernist Danish Designer

    Flemming Lassen (1902 – 1984) Modernist Danish Designer

    Flemming Lassen was born on February 23, 1902, in Copenhagen, to a family of artists. His mother, Ingeborg Winding, was a painter, and his father, Hans Vilhelm Lassen, was a decorative painter. Before completing his study at the Technical School, he worked as a mason. Read More →

  • Hannes Wettstein (1958 – 2008) Swiss Furniture Designer

    Hannes Wettstein (1958 – 2008) Swiss Furniture Designer

    He started to work for Cassina in 1994 with his Juno bed, and some more recent projects were presented in 2003. Since 1991 he also taught; he was a lecturer at the ETH of Zurich and taught at the Hochschule fur Gestaltung in Karlsruhe.Read More →

Charles Burchfield his early watercolours – Encyclopedia of Design

Charles Burchfield his early watercolours Based on the Museum of Modern Art New York Exhibition April 11 to April 26, 1930 One question always kept coming back to haunt American artist, Charles Burchfield. “He had this constant question, ‘Am I doing something valid?’

Ray Eames an American Designer – Encyclopedia of Design

Ray Eames (b. Bernice Alexandra Kaiser 1912-88) was an American designer. She was born in Sacramento, California. She was the wife of Charles Eames. In creative partnership with her spouse Charles Eames and the Eames Office, she was responsible for groundbreaking contributions in the field of architecture, furniture design, Industrial Design, manufacturing and the photographic arts.

Knoll

After earning a B.A. in Architecture from the University of California, Charles Pfister worked on the staff of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill’s interior design department for 15 years. It was during this period that he created the Pfister Lounge Collection for Knoll, with production beginning in 1971.

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