Mary Plumb-Blade – About Chair design

Mary Blade standing at a blackboard (CC Wikimedia)

In 1946, when this photograph was taken, Mary Blade was the only woman on the Cooper Union engineering faculty (where she initially taught drawing, mathematics and design) and one of few women on any engineering faculty in the United States. Blade was an avid and accomplished mountain climber. Photo at the Smithonian



This is my great aunt Mary Plumb-Blade. I never got to really know her (she died in 1994), but from everything I know about her, she was a really cool lady. She was an engineer at a time when few women were in the field, an amazing painter and a mountain climber amongst other things. These are photos I was surprised to find of her online.

Mary Blade was the only woman on the Cooper Union engineering faculty and one of few women on any engineering faculty in the United States.

The second photo is from the book Chair–The current state of the art, with the who, the why, and the what of it.[by Peter Bradford and Barbara Prete ,gje]. This was a 1978 book about the designs behind the chair. My great aunt’s chapter was on physical forces, sitting behavior and movement.

Apparently, my aunt did not like children at all, but she liked me, because I was quiet and liked to draw. She even bought me my first comic book. I wish I got to know her more before she passed. I grew up with her paintings all around my mom’s house, and I hope to one day be able to hang up at least one of her paintings in my home.

This I retumblrd from so nails, but do not know his or hers real name.

Innovative Furniture in America


Just went antiquing and found this awesome book. 6 bucks! I can’t wait to look through it, I’ve already seen some really unique pieces.

Via fortheloveofchairs:

White Books Chair Installation Awarded

Last year I posted about the White Books Chair project of Enzo Iorio. Yesterday I received an e-mail from Enzo informing me that the installation had won the honors of the Cartasia Biennial of contemporary art, held in Lucca, Italia, with main focus on paper art. Congratulations Enzo!

Richard Hutten in Design Museum Gent

Richard Hutten exposition in Design Museum Gent (Belgium)

After the White Book Chairs Installation in Italy now see Richard Hutten in his stacked books chair in Gent, Belgium.

Richard Hutten, Design Museum Gent

18 years of playing

February 26 – June 6, 2010

Richard Hutten (born 1967) is one of the most well-known and most unconventional Dutch designers. He graduated in 1991 at the Design Academy in Eindhoven and fairly quickly garnered international recognition.
In his own design studio he produced designs for furniture, products, interiors and exhibitions.
Hutten is a conceptual designer but his designs are highly functional, each and every one of them. Often the object will even have multiple functions.
Design museum Gent gives Hutten the assignment to give shape to the exhibition himself. The result will certainly show this, and will be telling of the convincing and typical style of Hutten.

Via Design Art News.

White Books Chairs – Chair Installation

White Book Chairs - Chair Installation pic5

Enzo Iorio, one of the participants, asked me to have a look at

White Book Chairs - Chair Installation pic5a

Enzo came together with a group of creative friends on occasion of their participation in the Cartasia 2010 Biennial of Contemporary Art which will be held in Lucca, Italia from June 19 – July 18, 2010.

It gave them the opportunity to rethink the use of old books that are about to end in a trash bin. They decided to give the old books a second life as chairs. The installation by Ri-Parliamone was showcased during a preview of the 2010 Biennial in Lucca from September 5 – October 3, 2009.

White Book Chairs - Chair Installation pic3

White Book Chairs - Chair Installation pic1

The books are soaked in a solution of water and vinyl glue to give them the necessary rigidity and resistance. Once dry they are given a coat of water-based paint. Subsequently they are assembled on a pallet, glued together and connected internally by a small metallic structure which guarantees its stability.
Being exposed to all weather conditions for a month, a transparent coat of water resistant paint is given for further safety.

White Book Chairs - Chair Installation pic7

apart from reading books, we can sit comfortably on a “mountain” of books

Thank you, Enzio! Great Idea!