Curated by Eric Wiedegreen, Chair of the Department of Interior Architecture + Design, this inaugural exhibition features the stunning Pietralunga-Rossi collection of vintage Herman Miller mid-century modern furniture. View classic designs from Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, Isamu Noguchi and Alexander Girard in the new 1000 square foot William Johnston gallery.
There are around twenty-five vintage pieces of mid-century modern furniture, all from one couple’s personal household goods, and all manufactured by Herman Miller. This exhibit was planned to be a learning experience for students and the public as to the lasting value of good design. It is a quirky collection with an unusual story, says Eric Wiedegreen, exhibition curator and chair of FSU’s Department of Interior Architecture + Design.
“Italian immigrant Narciso Rossi was an upholsterer in the early 1950s through mid-1970s at the Herman Miller plant in California, and acquired numerous pieces for his own home. On the deaths of Rossi and his wife, these furnishings were recognized by their heirs as important as a collection representing some of the best work of some very renowned designers. These included period pieces by Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, Isamu Noguchi and Alexander Girard.
The quirkiness comes in as Mr. Rossi used Herman Miller fabrics, leathers and vinyls of his choosing to upholster pieces to his liking. Thus the collection has pieces such as a red-orange leather Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman (with a lady’s coat fabricated from the extra upholstery leather) and a Nelson Marshmallow Sofa in unique orange and green Alexander Girard fabric.”
This exhibition is underwritten by the College of Fine Arts, Herman Miller and the Appleton Museum of Art.
The new School of Art and Design Gallery is located on the first floor (Room 1085) of the William Johnston Building. Exhibition dates: September 2011 – March 2012.