Noguchi Knife and Fork
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Vitra has manufactured furniture designs by Charles & Ray Eames and George Nelson since 1957. Building on this foundation, Vitra has developed a wide range of furnishings for the office, for the home and for public spaces in collaboration with progressive designers. Yet Vitra is more than just a design-oriented manufacturing company. The name also stands for the Vitra Design Museum, for a collection of modern furniture and its accompanying archive, for workshops and publications on topics of design, and for an architectural concept that unites buildings by Frank Gehry, Nicholas Grimshaw, Zaha Hadid, Tadao Ando, Alvaro Siza, Herzog & de Meuron and SANAA at the Vitra Headquarters in Birsfelden (Switzerland) and on the Vitra Campus in Weil am Rhein (Germany).
Product longevity is central to Vitra's contribution to sustainable development; short-lived styling is avoided at all costs. This can be seen most clearly in the classical pieces of furniture that have been used for decades, had several owners and have then even ended up as a part of a collection. For Vitra, the manufacture of sustainable products means intense pre-production development, where the highest-grade materials are selected and tests are carried out that simulate 15 years of use. In order to enforce and monitor sustainable development in all business activities of the company, a work group was formed in 1986 by the name of 'Vitra and the Environment'. Because of this, Vitra can proudly claim that it has been dedicated to sustainability for nearly a quarter of a century.
The son of an American writer and a Japanese poet, Isamu Noguchi was born in Los Angeles in 1904. He spent his childhood in Japan and his adolescence in America. Noguchi's fascination with art began while he was a pre-med student at Columbia University. A Guggenheim Fellowship in 1927 took him to Paris, where he worked in Brancusi's atelier. Noguchi's interests were as wide ranging as his travels: He designed visionary sets and costumes for the Martha Graham Dance Company and New York City Ballet, furniture and objects for a variety of manufacturers, the Akari lamps and myriad environments, site installations and large-scale public sculptures of great note. The Noguchi Garden Museum in Long Island City, New York, is a repository of his work.View other products by Isamu Noguchi