Charles and Ray Eames
Charles EamesAmerican (Saint Louis, Missouri, 1907 - 1978, Saint Louis, Missouri)
Ray EamesAmerican (Sacramento, California, 1916 - 1988, Los Angeles, California)
Eames Conference Room
The Eames conference and projection room was extracted from their building at 901 Washington in Venice, California. It not only illustrates the working environment of one of the most creative and influential design teams of this century, but is a work of design in its own right.
The Eameses took possession of this former car-repair shop in 1943, and the building became the permanent home of the Eames office four years later. This "office" was in fact a unique combination of workshop, design space, and film studio. It was dense with people, posters, memorabilia, photographs, signs, toys, equipment, seashells, books, movable panels, and prototypes.
A natural extension of the rest of the building, the conference and projection room had a large screen for the viewing of slide shows and films, a table surrounded by prototypes of the Eames Executive Chairs, and walls lined with images large and small. Each object in the room, no matter how mundane, celebrates human creativity. There is no marked predilection for the new versus the old, for modern design versus traditional crafts; everything is susceptible to being reused.
In such a context, what was once discarded regains a fresh presence, a visible reminder that the pursuit of design excellence can assume many guises — the mismatched silver candlesticks on the plastic-laminate table, the flag and mask on the wall, the old tin toys on the shelf.