Irving Harper: Works in Paper
by Ted Savage / February 1, 2013
Shining the light on a hidden superstar of modern design, Irving Harper: Works in Paper documents the private concoctions of a designer responsible for some of the most recognizable examples of mid-century American Modern, including the Marshmallow Sofa, Sunburst Clock, Ball Clock, and the still current Herman Miller company logo, created under the George Nelson brand umbrella during the 1940s and '50s.


(Click the images below for full sized images)

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Harper's professional portfolio encompasses Herman Miller furniture, graphics, interiors, and housewares, Howard Miller wall clocks, plus china collections, lamps, slide projectors, record players, typewriters, a catalog of defining design. He worked for Nelson till 1963, then headed his own Harper+George partnership with Phillip George into the '80s.

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Harper's personal art, captured in this coffee table volume, employed paper, glue, and household bits and pieces - matchsticks, toothpicks, pine cones, pasta, clock parts, eventually, his daughter's outgrown dolls - some 300 objects assembled from the early 1960s to 2005, when he ran out of home display space.

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Thank you to Maharam for the advance copy of the book (which was designed by their A4 Studio) and Collector's Weekly for the background.

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