Florence Knoll Bassett’s Collection to Be Auctioned

Before there was “Mad Men” and Don Draper, there was Florence Knoll, as she was known, arguably the designer most responsible for the square-jawed corporate look that conquered American offices after World War II.

Florence Knoll Bassett, who died this year at 101, lived to see her spare, handsome office landscapes televised more than a half century after Knoll Associates — where she was the eye and force majeureinvented the structured style that we now call “midcentury modern.” Trained as an architect, she translated Bauhaus architecture into low, clean-lined, floaty furniture, and helped establish interior design as a profession.

“I am not a decorator,” she pointedly clarified in 1964 in a New York Times interview. “The only place I decorate is my own house.”

Phillips is now offering a peek into just how, in fact, Florence Knoll Bassett decorated her homes in New York, and then Florida, where, after the death of her husband Hans Knoll, she married Harry Hood Bassett, a Miami banker. Some 50 artworks are being offered at two evening sales, on Oct. 25 and Nov. 14.

From the late 1940s until the early ’70s, the most intensive period of her collecting, she bought from galleries and from artist friends during studio visits. Though she saw with the eye of a Modernist, her eye was eclectic rather than strict, and open to different forms of abstraction.

The collection is personal. Even when she moved, she never traded or sold. She bought what she liked, and then lived with it until she died.

Sahred From Source link Arts

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