Happy Birthday, Ray!

Above: Ray with her famed dot pattern (copyright: Eames Office). Below: Ray's dot pattern tattooed on the forearm of an Eames admirer. (Copyright: Marlow Hoffman, 2011)

Today, we raise a toast to Ray Eames on her 101st birthday (10+02). With a strong background in painting, she worked with Hans Hofmann (a key figure in postwar American Art) and later became a founding member of American Abstract Artists. As Charles Eames said of Ray’s early career, “That’s a pretty good start.”

Throughout her life, Ray continued to function as a painter. When asked how it felt to give up the medium, she replied, “I never gave up painting. I just changed my palette.”

Ray shined as a master of color, pattern and structure. She and Charles, her husband and partner in crime, created a body of work that was overwhelming in scope, and yet undoubtably connected. From furniture, exhibitions, and graphics work (she created numerous abstract cover designs for Arts & Architecture magazine), to photography, film and toys, Ray helped shape the world of modern design as we know it. She will continue to inspire us for generations to come.

Cheers to a beautiful life.

In celebration of Ray, check out these two exhibitions:
Ray Eames: A Century of Modern Design
The California Museum in Sacramento
through February 23, 2014

Ray Eames: In the Spotlight
Art Center College of Design’s Williamson Gallery
February 25 – May 4, 2014

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