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Monday, June 6, 2011

Shu, Cranbrook and the roots of Knoll Associates
Uploaded by knolldesign, October 8, 2009

When Florence Schust (called "Shu" by her friends, as you will hear Richard Schultz refer to her in the video) saw Cranbrook Academy of Art, she knew it was the place she wanted to go to school. The campus, known as the birthplace of American modernism, was designed in 1928 by Eliel Saarinen and is comprised of ten Artist-in-Residence homes on one side of Academy Way and dormitories above graduate studios on the other side. The Academy's website provides several beautiful video tours of the campus today.

While a teenager and a student at the Kingswood School, a part of the 315-acre Cranbrook Educational Community, she met Eliel Saarinen and became an "unofficially adopted" member of the Saarinen family. During her years at Cranbrook Academy, she was immersed in a community of painters, sculptors, architects and designers, all working together to form an integrated concept. Later, when she married Hans Knoll, she brought Eero Saarinen, Ralph Rapson and Harry Bertoia...all from Cranbrook...into the company.

The magical beauty of Cranbrook, as well as the associations and friendships she formed there, no doubt influenced Florence Knoll's aesthetics and her vision of excellence for the company.

1 comment:

  1. I rarely get any comments from my "regulars" when I post videos about designers. Is there anyone out there looking at them, or should I quit posting them? If you have been looking at the videos and enjoying them, please let me know. Personally, I LOVE seeing the designers interviewed and want to keep posting this sort of thing if there are folks like me out there that I haven't been hearing from.