The Knoll Boston showroom hosted Celia Bertoia, youngest daughter of Harry Bertoia, on June 6, 2017, to share the history of her father and his continuing legacy. Celia Bertoia is the director and founder of the Harry Bertoia Foundation, working to educate and inform the public about Harry Bertoia and his impact on modern design. Knoll invited Celia to lecture on Harry Bertoia and his connection to Knoll. She also spent time signing copies of her book The Life and Work of Harry Bertoia.
Bertoia, a renowned designer, created some of the most iconic pieces of furniture like the Bird Chair, Side Chair, and Diamond Chair all for Knoll. His skill with metal wire however went beyond making chairs. Part of Celia Bertoia’s objective with the Foundation is to illustrate that there is much more to Harry Bertoia than his chair designs. As a sculptor of metal, the artist made jewelry, large-scale public works, sculptures, and monotypes.
Celia Bertoia in the center with Knoll Boston team.
Celia Bertoia also presented jewelry pieces that echo the design principles seen in Harry Bertoia’s furniture and sculpture. The large output of highly thought out objects is no result of repeatedly starting over again. The multifaceted nature of Harry Bertoia’s work clearly illustrates the artist’s own urge to keep designing. He often said, “The urge for good design is the same as the urge to go on living.” For Harry Bertoia, to design and improve everyday life was to live.
The Harry Bertoia Foundation was founded in 2013 and consists of a curated team of experts including Celia Bertoia who seek to share the greatness that was Harry Bertoia. Learn more about the foundation here. ♦