Data + Design Project

Paper Sculptures from an Icon of Industrial Design

Friday 10.05.2012 , Posted by
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The name Irving Harper is associated with some seriously iconic creations in the design world. As design director for the Nelson Office, he was responsible for some of the most memorable objects of the twentieth century, from the Marshmallow Sofa, to the Ball clock and even the Herman Miller logo. What most people don’t know is that he was also a prolific paper sculptor, spending nearly 50 years of his life working on fantastically beautiful creations at his home in Rye, New York.

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Harper began paper sculpting in 1964 as a method of relieving stress while working on the impressive Chrysler Pavilion for the New York World’s Fair. Since then he has created about 500 pieces which fill almost every nook and cranny of his home. Watch the excellent video below (part of Herman Miller’s Why Design series) for more insight into this living legend.

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Benjamin Starr

Written by Benjamin Starr



Known in some circles as the most amazing man in the universe, he once saved an entire family of muskrats from a sinking, fire engulfed steamboat while recovering from two broken arms relating to a botched no-chute wingsuit landing in North Korea. When not impressing people with his humbling humility, he can be found freelance writing, finding shiny objects on the internet, enjoying the company of much-appreciated friends and living out his nomadic nature. He is Managing Editor of Visual News. Follow his movements on Twitter:

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