Monday, March 23, 2009

Charles and Ray Eames




A long ago chapter in my life....

I found an ad on the internet which was selling the "House of Cards" by Charles and Ray Eames, the renown husband and wife designer team.

Seeing these cards brought back a flood of memories of a time in my life in the mid 1970's. I was a graduate student in the Design department at UCLA. I had a couple of jobs working both as a Graduate Teaching assistant in Costume design and also making extra money working in the Physics department on campus. My cousin who was also a student there had mentioned that she saw an ad in the campus classified. She kept saying, "This says a design studio in Venice is looking for someone to work in the office. I think you should apply." I was busy, I was working two jobs already and since I wasn't interested and she was graduating she said she thought she'd apply. Turns out it was not just an ordinary office but it was the office of "Charles and Ray Eames". From the time she took that job and for the several years that she worked for them both our lives and that of many of our friends and family became entwined with the Eames office. The impact of those years were monumental to all our lives on many levels. I'm sure many of you reading this will know what I am speaking of. For some of you, you know better than I, the workings of that office, the dynamics of such keen and creative minds such as Charles and Ray and all the characters that moved in and out and around their exceptional lives. So many of you worked there. You were the ones involved in all the details and demands and late night deadlines. You were also the ones that were closest to Charles and Ray. I remember their "magic and charisma and their almost God-like presence". But I was just a visitor after hours and one who could stand in awe of such a magical place as that small unobtrusive warehouse building that stood at 901 Washington Blvd. I remember clearly everyone always so busy, rushing around, scurrying to get the details sorted. I remember beautiful slide collections, and toys and everything set in little places so beautifully arranged and yet seemingly placed in a random fashion. It almost seemed like a grown up designy Santa's workshop with wood workers, model-makers, toy trains and all kinds of artists working their magic. What a time that was and that's not discounting all the friendships, the parties and the office antics. Well, I'll leave those to our personal memories. For those of you that may not have alot of background knowledge on Charles and Ray Eames I will be posting some history and some photos of their remarkable lives and examples of the design legacy that they gave to the world in the next several posts.From and ad on the internet:
"Charles and Ray Eames are big heroes of ours. We love their furniture, their films, their photographs and, of course, their philosophy. But what makes them ever-so-special to us is their ability to find inspiration and beauty in ordinary, everyday things.This set of medium-sized cards was designed by Charles Eames in 1952, and contains 32 interlocking pieces featuring delightful and colorful images of what the Eames' referred to as the "good stuff". Pictures of "familiar and nostalgic objects from the animal, mineral and vegetable kingdoms," as well as gorgeous textiles and patterns the couple collected on their world travels. It's a wonderfully fun and inspiring set, and even comes with instructions showing you a few of the many different ways the cards can be stacked, piled, and locked together.Each card measures 7" x 4.5" and features the Eames starburst logo on the back."




4 comments:

Laurie said...

Thanks for posting about this -- it's great to reminisce about what is known as "Eames era." I loved that last video - the happy music was so fun and the pace of it really brought home the idea that their lives were full of adventure and creativity!

Holly said...

when is the estate sale??? i would love to come....i miss seeing you...how about a girls night out soon...do we HAVE to wait for the young'uns to come home??? you, me, Jocy, your cool friend who makes jewelry ( the one i met at mexican food nite with the kids ) and whomever....or I can cook and we can hang here......in NOHO.....

Menehune said...

Such a treat - once again, mahalo! menehune

barb cabot said...

Holly, definitely a get-together will be good very soon.

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