Jean Prouvé was inspired by the architects of the avant-garde and embraced a vision of design as a moral issue. As an influential designer, architect, engineer and teacher, he played an important role in the development of mass production systems in post-war modernism. Metal was the preferred material for the trained art smith. However, with the benefit of his profound knowledge of materials and the skilful use of connecting techniques, he also succeeded in integrating wood into his furniture in a very refined way. Characteristic for his work is the large-scale use of materials and the visualisation of the physical forces that occur.
François Morellet's work is primarily dedicated to painting, light art, kinetic art and sculpture. His works are attributed to Minimalism and Concrete Art and are based on a strictly rational application of mathematical systems combined with a humorous playfulness. Grid and planar structures as well as linear arrangements are characteristic of his work.
Gerrit Rietveld was one of the most important designers and architects of the 20th century. A trained carpenter, the Dutchman joined the De Stijl movement at an early age. From 1918 onwards, his works reflect the artistic ideals of the artists' group. Abstract compositions of lines and planes, predominantly in black, white, grey and the primary colours yellow, red and blue, were characteristic for his work. However, in search of ways to further develop his radical artistic ideas, Rietveld soon turned away from the De Stijl aesthetic and experimented with innovative materials such as laminated wood and aluminium until the end of the 1930s. These experiments ultimately resulted in the legendary Zig-Zag chair.
The American sculptor and conceptualist Lawrence Weiner defines language as his medium. “I grew up in a city where I had read the walls; I still read the walls. I love to put work of mine out on the walls and let people read it. Some will remember it and then somebody else comes along and puts something else over it. It becomes archaeology rather than history.” Weiner's works exist only as language and can be exhibited in any form. His texts appear on walls and windows of galleries and in public spaces, on canvases and paper, as audio recordings and videos, in printed books and posters, cast or carved objects, tattoos, graffiti, etc.
Frank O. Gehry
In the early 1970s, Frank O. Gehry designed the Easy Edges collection - a group of seventeen pieces of cardboard furniture that made the young Canadian architect famous worldwide. Made from layered corrugated cardboard, this chair embodies the aesthetic combination of a raw, ordinary material with modern, geometric design. "One day I saw a pile of corrugated cardboard outside of my office - the material which I prefer for building architecture models - and I began to play with it into shapes with a hand saw and a pocket knife." The result was a surprisingly robust, industrial yet ecologically conscious piece of furniture that developed a noble texture in its use. Gehry's innovative experiments in furniture design and his procedural explorations earned him his reputation as a pioneer in the field of modern architecture.