Our Profession On Parade
Edited by Stanley Abercrombie -- Interior Design, 3/1/2007 12:00:00 AM
The year is 1932. Donald Deskey's Radio City Music Hall opens in New York, and the Cranbrook Academy of Art opens in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, while the American Institute of Interior Decorators holds its first annual conference and launches the Decorator's Digest. (Five years later, the magazine becomes an independent publication, changing its title to Interior Design.) In 1931, Edward Wormley begins working for Dunbar Furniture—an association that will endure until 1968. With Ludwig Mies van der Rohe as the last director, Germany's Bauhaus is closed by the Nazis in 1933. That same year, Herman Miller shows its first modern furniture, designed by Gilbert Rohde, at the Century of Progress world's fair in Chicago. In 1935, the ocean liner Normandie, its interiors designed by Jean Dunand and Émile-Jacques Ruhlmann, among others, takes its maiden voyage. The following year, an architecture firm called Skidmore, Owings & Merrill hangs out a shingle. Frank Lloyd Wright completes Fallingwater in Bear Run, Pennsylvania, in 1939.
1932 Alvar Aalto designs the Paimio chair; Marcel Breuer Associates builds a house in Wiesbaden, Germany, as shown in this floor plan; and The Decorator's Digest debuts.
1935 Dorothy Draper & Co. redecorates the Mark Hopkins Hotel in San Francisco, and Gerald Summers comes out with a tea trolly.
1936 In Racine, Wisconsin, Frank Lloyd Wright completes the Johnson Wax building, home to this desk; in Como, Italy, Guiseppe Terragni designs the Casa del Fascio and its interiors; the Decorator's Digest features a Hedrich Blessing photograph of the stairway at a Frazier & Rafferty residence in Lake Forest, Illinois.
1937 Nelson and Mary Rockefeller move into their New York apartment, designed by Jean-Michel Frank.
1938 Hans Knoll strikes a pose.
1939 Franco Albini designs this desk for himself, two decades before it goes into production for Knoll.
The decade opens as Dorothy Draper & Co. redesigns the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C., and Dorothy Draper herself begins broadcasting the radio show Lines About Living. In 1941, New York's Museum of Modern Art holds a design competition and showcases the winners—including Charles Eames, Eero Saarinen, Harry Weese, and Bernard Rudofsky—in "Organic Design in Home Furnishings." Florence Schust joins her future husband's furniture company, forming the Knoll Planning Unit in 1943. George Nelson and Henry Wright publish the best-selling Tomorrow's House in 1945. MoMA curator Edgar Kaufmann, Jr., follows up with "Modern Rooms of the Last 50 Years" in 1946. In 1948, George Nelson & Associates devises the first track lighting, for a Herman Miller showroom. A single year, 1949, sees the completions of Marcel Breuer's prototype house in MoMA's garden, the Eames house and studio in Pacific Palisades, California, and Philip Johnson's Glass House in New Canaan, Connecticut.
1941 The December issue of Interior Design and Decoration spotlights a Joseph Mullen residence.
1943 Before marrying Hans Knoll, Florence "Shu" Schust introduces her first furniture designs, for Knoll.
1944 Bruno Mathsson's father's company, Karl Mathsson, unveils this lounge chair.
1946 Charles and Ray Eames design the LCM chair, picked up by Herman Miller three years later; Ward Bennett and Ben Baldwin of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill design Cincinnati's Terrace Plaza Hotel.
1947 Alvar Aalto begins building the Massachusetts Institute of Technology dormitory shown in this floor plan.
1948 Luis Barragán moves into this house in Mexico City, as Knoll launches Eero Saarinen's Womb chair.
1949 George Nelson & Associates's model room appears in "An Exhibition for Modern Living" at the Detroit Institute of Art.
Edgar Kaufmann, Jr., publishes What Is Modern Design? and launches the "Good Design" series at both Chicago's Merchandise Mart and New York's Museum of Modern Art in 1950. As exhibitions designers for the debut year, he chooses Charles and Ray Eames; Finn Juhl will follow in 1951. Also in '51, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe completes the Farnsworth house outside Chicago. In 1952, Jack Lenor Larsen opens a textiles studio—his first commission being New York's Lever House by Gordon Bunshaft of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill—and Arne Jacobsen designs his Ant chair for Fritz Hansen. The ever prolific Kaufmann returns with What Is Modern Interior Design? in 1953. Two years later, Billy Baldwin decorates Cole Porter's suite at the Waldorf Towers in New York, and Le Corbusier finishes his Notre-Dame-du-Haut chapel in Ronchamp, France. Frank Lloyd Wright's Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York opens in 1959.
1950 Charles and Ray Eames design storage units for Herman Miller.
1952 Marcel Breuer completes this cottage in Lakeville, Connecticut; for Fritz Hansen, Arne Jacobsen designs the Ant chair.
1955 The January issue of Interior Design features sculptural ceramics by Luke and Rolland Lietzke; Le Corbusier's Notre-Dame-du-Haut chapel is finished in Ronchamp, France.
1956 George Nelson's Marshmallow sofa for Herman Miller comes out.
1958 Philip Johnson and William Pahlmann's New York restaurant, the Four Seasons, gets ready for its close-up.
1959 Paul Rudolf smiles for the camera, while Frank Lloyd Wright's Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum opens in New York.
In Copenhagen, Arne Jacobsen builds and furnishes the SAS Royal Hotel in 1960. The next year, Jack Lenor Larsen introduces stretch fabric, and the Salone del Mobile debuts in Milan. In 1962, Eero Saarinen & Associates completes Idlewild Airport's TWA Terminal. Mario Bellini begins consulting for companies such as Cassina and Olivetti in Italy in 1963; back in the U.S., Billy Baldwin redesigns New York's Tiffany & Co., and the Interior Design Educators Council is formed. Davis Allen of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill completes Hawaii's Mauna Kea Beach Hotel in 1965. The decade's premier book of theory, Robert Venturi's Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture, comes out in 1966, the same year Art Gensler opens his namesake firm in San Francisco. In 1967, New York hails Ford Foundation interiors by Roche & Dinkeloo's Warren Platner, and Billy Baldwin designs the Onassis villa in Skorpios, Greece. The first NeoCon (National Exhibition of Contract Furnishings) is held in Chicago in 1969.
1963 Skidmore, Owings & Merrill designs a headquarters for Armstrong Cork in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
1964 George Nelson and Robert Propst's Action Office furniture for Herman Miller responds to the work habits of nine-to-fivers, while Jeremiah Goodman's illustration of a C. Eugene Stephenson design takes the cover of Interior Design's February issue.
1965 Alvar and Elissa Aalto design conference rooms for the Institute of International Education in New York.
1966 The Whitney Museum of American Art by Marcel Breuer & Associates is a new icon for New York, and Nicos Zographos's CH-66 chair offers a novel take on tubular steel.
1967 With De Pas, D'Urbino, & Lomazzi's inflatable Blow chairs for Zanotta, change is in the air.
1969 The Metamorphosis beauty salon by Design Coalition's Alan Buchsbaum opens in Great Neck, New York.
In 1970, New York Times architecture and design critic Ada Louise Huxtable becomes the first journalist to win a Pulitzer Prize for criticism, and the organization now known as Council for Interior Design Accreditation is founded to govern education programs. The first Kips Bay Decorator Show House opens in New York in 1973. The next year, the National Council for Interior Design Qualification begins administering uniform examinations. The American Institute of Decorators and the National Society of Interior Designers merge to form the American Society of Interior Designers in 1975. The Pacific Design Center introduces West Week in Los Angeles in 1976—while, in New York, Warren Platner Associates designs the Windows on the World restaurant atop the World Trade Center. Also that year, the Helmsley Palace Hotel commissions interiors by Sarah Tomerlin Lee, who assumed leadership of Tom Lee after the death of her husband. Throughout the decade, computers enter the design business.
1971 The July issue of Interior Design spotlights four views of a kinetic light mobile by Bryan Wynter.
1972 Louis Kahn's Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth brilliantly echoes Texas farm buildings, while Venturi & Scott Brown's house for Sandy and Peter Brant updates residential formality in Greenwich, Connecticut.
1973 Robert Kleinschmidt of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill completes the Banca di Roma, Chicago.
1974 Don Chadwick's modular seating celebrates casual gatherings.
1976 Mario Bellini's Rotonda table comes out from Cassina; in New York, Mario Buatta makes his mark as the Prince of Chintz, and Warren Platner Associates's Windows on the World greets its first diners.
1978 A reading room by Richard Meier & Partners, Architects, makes a stunning addition to New York's Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.
In the 1980's, Gene Summers and Phyllis Lambert of Ridgway renovate and manage the Los Angeles Biltmore Hotel, replete with furniture by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and art by Jim Dine. The Musée du Louvre, Paris, shows Jack Lenor Larsen's fabrics in 1980. In 1982, Alabama becomes the first state to pass a certification law for interior designers; Alexander Girard installs his collection at the Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Interior Design hosts its first Leaders' Meeting in 1983. A year later, the Design Industries Foundation for AIDS is founded, and Ecart launches the boutique hotel with Morgans, New York. In 1985, Interior Design establishes its Hall of Fame. In 1986, Naomi Leff & Associates converts the city's Rhinelander mansion into the Ralph Lauren flagship, Charles Pfister and Pamela Babey collaborate on Royal Dutch Shell in the Hague, and Tom Lee redesigns the Willard Hotel in Washington, D.C. In 1987, Alan Buchsbaum—who had designed apartments for Diane Keaton and Bette Midler—dies from complications due to AIDS.
1982 The Kuwait Chancery in Washington, D.C.—a project by Michael McCarthy of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill—and the Prima chair by Mario Botta redefine notions of ornament.
1984 Bold, playful work graces the April cover of Interior Design.
1985 Harry Seidler & Associates's Hong Kong Club opens.
1986 Sarah Tomerlin Lee is elected to the Interior Design Hall of Fame, while the New York office of Vignelli Associates offers stunning views inside and out.
1987 A Murphy/Jahn–designed tunnel improves pedestrian flow at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport; the Advantage Showroom by JGL Interiors was commended in an Interior Design competition and made the cover in November.
1988 Andrée Putman's Entrepots Laine collection includes this bench.
The Americans With Disabilities Act, mandating barrier-free design, is passed in 1990. In 1991, Naomi Leff & Associates unveils the Saddle Ridge Conference Center in Beaver Creek, Colorado, and Gucci boutiques in San Diego and Las Vegas. Peter Marino Architect's Barneys New York flagship is completed in 1992. Babey Moulton Jue & Booth's Four Seasons Milan follows the next year. Several professional organizations merge to form the International Interior Design Association in 1994, while a merging of the minds of Bill Stumpf and Don Chadwick produces the Aeron chair for Herman Miller. In 1995, Clodagh produces a room for New York's Kips Bay Decorator Show House and fabrics for Designtex. A year later, Alberto Meda launches his namesake chair for Vitra. In 1997, Shelton, Mindel & Associates's lighting for Nessen debuts; Tihany Design creates New York restaurants Jean-Georges and Le Cirque 2000; and George M. Beylerian establishes Material ConneXion to showcase the very newest of the new.
1990 DMJM Rottet uses elements of traditional Mexican homes for the interiors of the Solana Marriott Hotel in Westlake, Texas.
1994 Gluckman Mayner Architects unveils Pittsburgh's Andy Warhol Museum, while a Montreal hair salon by Jean-Pierre Viau Design appears on the cover of April's Interior Design.
1995 Alexander Gorlin Architects's namesake principal moves into his own house in Seaside, Florida.
1997 Kevin Walz's collection of cork furniture debuts under the name KorQinc; Saporiti Italia launches Arco shelving by Cesare Casati; and Donghia Furniture design director John Hutton produces a klismos chair.
1998 Shipping crates inspire the Los Angeles office that Clive Wilkinson Architects designs for TBWA/Chiat/Day; Hariri & Hariri Architecture completes a New York penthouse.
1999 Architröpolis becomes the rock star of design firms, with a Miami house for Lenny Kravitz.
In 2000, not only does the American Institute of Architects name Gensler firm of the year, but vice chairman Margo Grant Walsh also receives the Leadership Award of Excellence from the New York chapter of the International Interior Design Association. Downtown Los Angeles becomes home to José Rafael Moneo's Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in 2002, Gehry Partners's Walt Disney Concert Hall in 2003, and Morphosis's Caltrans headquarters in 2004. In March 2004, Interior Design publishes its 1,000th issue. A 2006 traveling retrospective, "Jack Lenor Larsen: Creator and Collector," opens at the Museum of Arts & Design in New York, and Polshek Partnership Architects completes the restoration of Louis Kahn's Yale University Art Gallery in New Haven. By 2007, 21,000 interior designers have been certified, and certification laws are in effect in 24 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and eight provinces of Canada.
2001 Architecture Research Office defines New York's Qiora store and spa with organza veils, while the September Interior Design focuses on Beyer Blinder Belle's Mark Morris Dance Group HQ in Brooklyn.
2002 A Sol LeWitt mural dominates reception at a New York financial firm, a collaboration between David Chipperfield Architects and IA.
2003 Swarovoski's Crystal Palace Project includes Vincent Van Duysen's Cascade, composed of 21,000 crystals on 30 strands of LEDs; Adam Tihany's polyethylene Nesting chairs for Rossi di Albizzate come with optional internal illumination.
2004 Chetwood Associates's namesake chairman builds a flight of fancy for his family in Surrey, U.K.; Poltrona Frau introduces Paolo Rizzatto's Regina chair; graduates of Holland's Design Academy Eindhoven participate in Downtown, a satellite show during New York's International Contemporary Furniture Fair; and Interior Design's April cover targets Pierre Cardin's Hotel Résidence Maxim's in Paris.
2005 Process colors inspire Gensler's office for Sun Chemical in Parsippany, New Jersey.
2006 The Fire Company's minimalist hearth, Ecosmart Fire, is deemed the most innovative product of the year by Interior Design.