4. Saarinen Inside Museum Collections

Tulip Chair and Womb Chair at Brooklyn MuseumLeft, Saarinen’s “Pedestal” Armchair and Seat Cushion, Designed 1956; Manufactured ca. 1970. Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Knoll International, Inc. Right, Eero Saarinen’s Womb Chair, Model No. 70, Designed 1947-1948, Manufactured ca. 1959. Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Sandra Sheppard Rodgers, Gail Sheppard Moloney, Lynn Sheppard Manger, John W. Sheppard, Jr. from the Estate of their mother, Rose Jackson Sheppard Milbank, by exchange.  Both photos Creative Commons-BY, by Brooklyn Museum. 

Saarinen’s furniture and architecture designs are found across the city at museums like the Brooklyn Museum. On view at the Luce Visible Storage and Study Center at the Brooklyn Museum is Saarinen’s “Pedestal” Armchair and Seat Cushion, designed in 1956 using pliable fiberglass and wool. The chair has been nicknamed the “Tulip” chair, and the chair design was originally featured at The Museum of Modern Art’s Organic Design in Home Furnishings. 

Also at the Brooklyn Museum is the Womb Chair, Model No. 70, made of chrome-plated steel, fiberglass, plastic, wood-particle shell, latex foam, original fabric upholstery. The Womb Chair was designed as “a chair that was like a basket full of pillows” and is considered one of the most iconic representations of organic modernism. Saarinen’s “Grasshopper” Highback Armchair is also displayed at the museum, prepared using bentwood and wool. The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art also have online collections displaying Saarinen’s furniture.