Shiro Kuramata - Design New York Saturday, November 14, 2009 | Phillips

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  • Literature

    Kathryn B. Hiesinger and Felice Fischer, Japanese Design: A Survey Since 1950, Philadelphia and New York, 1995, p. 163, no. 186 for an example of the chair; Shiro Kuramata 1934-1991, exh. cat., Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, 1996, pp. 56-57, fig. 15 and p. 181, fig. 7 for examples of the chair

  • Catalogue Essay

    "The darkest night would shine / If you would come to me soon / Until you will, how still my heart / How high the moon…" A durable jazz standard, "How High the Moon" was first performed on Broadway in the 1940 revue Two for the Show. In subsequent years, it was recorded by a pantheon of jazz greats including Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, and Benny Goodman.

  • Artist Biography

    Shiro Kuramata

    Japanese • 1934 - 1991

    Shiro Kuramata is widely admired for his ability to free his designs from gravity and use materials in ways that defied convention. After a restless childhood, his ideas of being an illustrator having been discouraged, Kuramata discovered design during his time at the Teikoku Kizai Furniture Factory in Arakawa-ku in 1954. The next year he started formal training at the Department of Interior Design at the Kuwasawa Design Institute. His early work centered on commercial interiors and window displays. In 1965, at the age of 31, he opened his own firm: Kuramata Design Office.

    Throughout his career he found inspiration in many places, including the work of Italian designers (particularly those embodying the Memphis style) and American conceptual artists like Donald Judd, and combined such inspirations with his own ingenuity and creativity. His dynamic use of materials, particularly those that were transparent, combination of surfaces and awareness of the potential of light in design led him to create objects that stretched structural boundaries and were also visually captivating. These qualities are embodied in his famous Glass Chair (1976).

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“How High the Moon” sofa

Nickel-plated steel mesh, nickel-plated steel.
27 1/2 x 58 7/8 x 32 1/4 in. (70 x 149.5 x 82 cm.)
Manufactured by Ishimaru Co. Ltd., for Idée, Japan.  Number three from the edition of 30.  Together with a certificate of authenticity from Meiko Kuramata.

$60,000 - 80,000 


14 Nov 2009
New York