Eileen Gray (Ireland 1878-1976)

“The smallest task well done, brings in a moment more satisfaction than failure knows in a lifetime.” Born in Ireland, designer Eileen Gray, while attended the Slade School of Fine Art in London, worked at a furniture-building workshop where she learned to work with Asian lacquers. Around 1910, Gray begancreating lacquered folding screens. A few years later, she displayed her work at the Salon des Artistes Décorateurs, attracting the attention of Jacques Doucet, a couturier and art collector, who would become Eileen Gray's first major client. Around 1922, Eileen Gray opened Galerie Jean Désert, a gallery from which she could show and sell her lacquer screens and tables. It was around this time that Eileen Gray became acquainted with the Dutch avant-garde group De Stijl.It was through their abstract geometric works and through the French architect Jean Badovici, that Gray began her own involvement in the Modernist movement. Contemporary architecture had a strong influence on Eileen Gray's work and she started to createrigorously functional furniture. Eileen Gray and Badovici designed their own home in Roquebrune: E-1027 between 1926 until 1929. Eileen Gray designed some very modern furniture for that home, including the celebrated "E-1027" side table with a circular glass top and tubular steel frame. Gray had a handful of other commissions and iIn 1937 Eileen Gray exhibited her work in Le Corbusier's "Pavillon des Temps Nouveau". Little more was heard about Eileen Gray until her work was rediscoveredin 1970s.

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