As a supporter of the INDE.Awards and partner of The Design Studio category, Herman Miller understands the importance of fostering and supporting designers in their quest for design perfection.
May 15th, 2020
On a recent visit to Australia to celebrate the opening of the Living Edge showroom in Melbourne, Jeremy Hocking, President Herman Miller International, talked about the company’s commitment to designers. He explained, “We are a part of the design community so we employ designers to design beautiful furniture that’s compelling and crave-able for customers as well as sponsoring them and employing them to work for us. We want to also be very present in the interior design communities and visible as sponsors of what they do, we want to celebrate the best of what they do….particularly in the Asia Pacific which is the newer, rising region.”
With more than one hundred years of business experience Herman Miller appreciates design that has expert form and function but also that singular quality that makes a product special, a future icon. That is why Herman Miller collaborates with designers from across the globe who can create the furniture masterpieces of tomorrow.
Working with the crème of international designers, Herman Miller is assured of design that is unique and exemplary however it is in the translation of a concept, through manufacturing and process, that guarantees perfect resolution.
There are a multitude of designers who have developed product with Herman Miller, including BassamFellows, Yves Béhar, Ward Bennett, Jeffrey Bernett, EOOS, Naoto Fukasawa, Isamu Noguchi, Vincent Van Duysen and Charles Wilson and of course the peerless Charles and Ray Eames. Each has contributed outstanding design that has influenced the world and made our workplaces a better environment to inhabit. For instance, think of the Nagouchi Rudder table or the Eames walnut stools; Or perhaps the Crosshatch furniture collection by EOOS, Fukasawa’s Saiba tables and chairs or Van Duysen’s Brabo seating and tables! Each designer has created a unique offering that expresses and encapsulates the Herman Miller ethos of fine design and expert craftsmanship.
However, throughout its history, Herman Miller has never rested on its laurels, always looking to the future to advance and provide innovative product for the ever-changing work environment and so the company has organically evolved.
These days Herman Miller is not just one company, as over time and gathering under the umbrella of the Herman Miller Group, there has been a curated acquisition of other brands that align with the ideals of Herman Miller and also deliver diverse furniture choice. With brands such as Design Within Reach, Geiger, Maharam, Nemschoff, Colebrook Bosson Saunders, naughtone, Maars Living Walls and Hay joining the Herman Miller family there is literally a product for every occasion and every project.
Hocking commented, “ (We want to) express what the Herman Miller Group is as a whole, the reason you invest in a new company is because you love it, it is of value. What the Herman Miller Group is doing is communicating the diversity, the variety we have.”
As the office environment has changed significantly the workplace has become more relaxed to include lifestyle products and the Group has recognised this move to include a more residential style offering. Hocking remarked, “It seems to us that talking to interior designers fitting out workplaces they want a variety of products on these floorplates and a more lifestyle feel to workplace. So we are finding ways to communicate the diversity, the variety of the Herman Miller Group.”
There is much happening within the Herman Miller Group and rest assured that designers and their clients will be the beneficiaries. Beautiful, authentic product for work and for home is the order of the day and the benefits are manifold for everyone.
“We do a certain amount of inhouse product design work and I think there is a lot of brand creative work done. With the collection of companies now that make up the HMG there is work to coordinate. When we buy a brand it is not our intent to change the essence of what that brand means because of course the reason you invest in a new company is because you love it, it has value. What the HMG brand people are trying to do is deeply understand those essences and find ways to express this.”
“The problem we have today is how do you make open plan (design) palatable and healthy and I think we have done that by understanding that movement is really important. Movement in your chair is very important so designing and developing products that for example enable you to breathe in your chair. We were the first to invent the Pellicle and the mesh in the Aeron chair in 1994….and since remastered it is still a massive commercial success, an icon, go to solution. Having an aerated material to sit on is a solution for the sitter and added this dimension of breathability that no one had really thought about before. “
Design Within Reach
Colebrook Bosson Saunders
Maars Living Walls
Vincent Van Duysen
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