Last Friday, Florence Knoll, the renowned mid-20th-century furniture designer, died at 101. Knoll worked with Modernist masters and Bauhaus founders Mies van der Rohe, Walter Gropius, and Marcel Breuer. In a strange twist of fate, on Friday one of my mother’s custom Florence Knoll couches, 2 Mies van der Rohe chairs, ottoman, and coffee table arrived at my home.
My mother bought this furniture for her Boston pied-à-terre when she was married to an architect who came from the Bauhaus school and worked with Walter Gropius. Gropius was our neighbor at our home outside of Boston. Excluding the Vineyard house, all of Mother’s homes were mid-century modern and were showcased in interiors magazines (I’ll share some photographs in a post).
In a rebellious move, when I decorated my own home I embraced traditional interior design. I bowed to Cowtan & Tout and Brunschwig & Fils and piping became my obsession. My mother was horrified. But, now my slipcovered Park Avenue circa 1960s pieces are in storage and, ironically, Mother’s furniture looks right at home. Life is certainly a circle.