T, The New York Times Style Magazine celebrated seven great furniture designers who also happen to be women, including Florence Knoll, Gae Aulenti and Cini Boeri, in an article published on August 4. The feature includes painted sketches by the artist Leanne Shapton. These sketches—a selection of the more than 100 that Shapton did over a few months—are on view at the fashion designer Rachel Comey's SoHo boutique in New York City. The exhibition, "SEATS: Studies of Furniture Designed by Women," is the result of a collaborative project between Shapton and Comey that began in the spring.
"I thought, I'll draw the furniture we wish we had access to, that we wish was as easy to source as the Breuer and Eames chairs that are so ubiquitous now," Shapton told T.
The piece celebrates the work of Florence Knoll, considered the company's visionary and guiding light throughout its formative years. Of Shapton's sketch of the Florence Knoll Settee, the artist told the magazine: "I'm trying to abstract something out of how attracted I am to the quilting. I love that very straight grid."
Gae Aulenti and Cini Boeri are also featured. Gae Aulenti, whose featured design is a lounge chair made for Kartell in 1975, first collaborated with Knoll on the company's Boston and New York showrooms in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In 1972, Knoll introduced Aulenti's Jumbo Table, an imposing marble coffee table that she had originally conceived in 1965. Aulenti's second design for Knoll, introduced in the Aulenti Collection in 1976, was a complete collection that included lounge seating, side chairs and tables.
Cini Boeri, known for her signature soft upholstery, designed for Knoll and, prior to its acquisition by Knoll in 1968, for the Italian firm Gavina SpA. Boeri's designs for Knoll include the Gradual Lounge, an innovative, adjustable lounge system; the Brigadier sofa, and the Cini Boeri Lounge Collection (2008).
View the original article in T Magazine.