Capitalist mass production owes a lot to Charles and Ray Eames. So,
too, do post-Modern design and architecture. Not to mention our fannies,
most all of which have resided occasionally in one of the renowned and
comfortable chairs that this talented duo designed in the Fifties.
documentarians Jason Cohn and Bill Jersey, screening on December 8 at Harkins Valley Art in Tempe.
Eames: The Architect and the
Painter considers the lives and influences on American culture of Charles
(the architect) and his wife, Ray (the painter, whose name has been obscured
for decades despite her many contributions to the design firm her husband
Charles forwarded the notion that what you own informs who you are,
and he and Ray set about, in post-World War II America, to prove it with
striking designs in inexpensive furniture, housewares, films, and prefab
The Eames are best known as the creators of what became known as "the Eames chair," a mid-century classic that Time magazine called "the greatest design of the 20th century" and that's still being manufactured by Herman Miller.
Like the Eames' crowded creative lives, the documentary about them is chockablock with imagery--graphics float over film clips; pull- quotes appear above and on top of old photos--and is just clever enough to entertain even those not interested in who these innovators were and how they impacted contemporary art and culture.
Eames: The Architect and the Painter was produced and directed by Jason Cohn and Bill Jersey; written by Cohn; narrated by James Franco; edited by Don Bernier; music by Michael Bacon; released by First Run Features.
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