Eileen Gray

Possibly the most undermined furniture designer of the 20th century, Eileen Gray is now considered as one of the most important names in her field and one of the most influential designers whose work inspired both Art Deco and modernism. Her distinctive luxurious style with geometric forms and industrial materials impressed and stimulated many modernist designers such as Le Corbusier and Mies van der Rohe, who shared many of her aesthetic ideals. Since her designs’ return to the sector in 1972, she has been en vogue and collected by stylish people such as famous fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent.

Born to a wealthy and aristocratic Irish family, Eileen Grey studied Fine Arts in the beginning of her education. Gradually growing bored of painting classes, she wanted hands on experience with design. She discovered her interest in lacquer work, and practiced so dedicatedly that she contracted the painful lacquer disease on her hands but her persistence did not yield.

It was not until 1913 that she felt confident enough to exhibit her work by showing some decorative panels at the Salon des Artistes Décorateurs, which drew attention and got her some commissions as an interior designer. However, when the World War I broke out, she had to move to London and leave Paris and her newly acquired network behind, which slowed down her career.

While her contemporaries were working under the wings of male designers, such as Charlotte Perriand with Le Corbusier, she lacked this shelter and as a woman of gentle heritage, her options of PR were limited. Her first significant commission was modernizing the home of the milliner Madame Mathieu Lévy, who was a successful boutique owner. She spent four years from 1917 to 1921 to refurnish the apartment with original and innovative designs. Gray designed most of its furniture (including her famous Bibendum chair), carpets and lamps, and installed lacquered panels on the walls. She used plain coverings for her designs such as the Bibendum Chair, the Serpent Chair and the Pirogue Boat Bed. Gray's innovative Bibendum Chair was one of the 20th century's most recognizable furniture designs with its luxurious and voluptuous structure. Its back/arm rest consists of two semi-circular, padded tubes covered in soft leather. The name of the chair comes from the Bibendum character everyone knows from the Michelin tire ads. The Bibendum chair was a great success with the art and reviews in papers and magazines declared it a "triumph of modern living".

Madame Lévy's commission provided a great financial success for Gray. In 1924, after earning recognition and financial comfort, persuaded by her lover and art critic Jean Badovici, she turned her interests to architecture, which resulted in the famous E-1027 House in southern France, which was a modern architecture wonder, putting even Le Corbusier in awe. Some say Le Corbusier was even extremely jealous of a woman who could design so well and he built his summerhouse nearby just to be close. He also decorated –or according to some vandalized- the walls of E-1027 with his murals, which he painted completely naked.

Gray designed every single detail for her beloved E-1027 house. Her circular glass E-1027 table, originally designed to indulge her sister’s love for breakfast in bed, was greatly inspired by the tubular steel use of Marcel Breuer at the Bauhaus. Unfortunately, during the World War II she was forced to leave E-1027 and move to the inlands.

After the war she found out the house was looted. She ended up living a reclusive life in Paris and was slowly forgotten by the design industry. It was not until 1968 that Gray returned to the design scene with an article appreciating her work, written by the critic Joseph Rykwert in the Domus magazine. In 1972 Zeev Aram convinced her to produce her Bibendum chair and E-1027 table. He recalls her first reaction as “Do you really think it’s worthwhile?” She spent the later years carefully analyzing the reproductions of her work and died in 1976, at the age of 98. Her recognition in the art market continued to increase after her death. In February 2009, Gray's "Dragon" armchair made by her between 1917 and 1919 -acquired by her early patron Suzanne Talbot and later part of the Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé collection- was sold at auction in Paris for € 21.9 million (US$28.3 million), setting an auction record for 20th century decorative art.

What is your Eileen Gray item worth?

Get your item valuated
Sep 11, 2010 0
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of adjustable...
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of adjustable...
701 EILEEN GRAY; Pair of adjustable... EILEEN GRAY; Pair of adjusta...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Feb 12, 2010 1
EILEEN GRAY Pair of adjustable...
EILEEN GRAY Pair of adjustable...
202 EILEEN GRAY Pair of adjustable... EILEEN GRAY Pair of adjustabl...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
May 19, 2016 2
Eileen Gray, floor lamp 'Tube Light', for ClassiCon
Eileen Gray, floor lamp 'Tube Light...
Eileen Gray, floor lamp 'Tube Light', for ClassiCon, design...
Lauritz
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Jun 25, 2016 3
Attributed to EILEEN GRAY
Attributed to EILEEN GRAY
- Z40 Design Attributed to EILEEN GRAY (1878 - 1976) TABLE LAMP, ci...
Koller
Est: CHF ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: CHF ... (Get with premium)
Jan 14, 2012 4
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of side tables;...
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of side tables;...
1219 EILEEN GRAY; Pair of side tables;... EILEEN GRAY; Pair of side...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Jun 12, 2006 5
w - KATHLEEN SCOTTBRITISH, 1878-1947
w - KATHLEEN SCOTTBRITISH, 1878-1947
signed: K. SCOTT , bronze, dark green patina Lady Kathleen Scott, ...
Sotheby's
Est: GBP ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: GBP ... (Get with premium)
Jun 25, 2014 6
Eileen Gray (1879-1976)
Eileen Gray (1879-1976)
Eileen Gray (1879-1976) Untitled stamped with the signature 'Eileen...
Christie's
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sep 27, 2011 7
AN EILEEN GRAY OCCASIONAL TABLE
AN EILEEN GRAY OCCASIONAL TABLE
AN EILEEN GRAY OCCASIONAL TABLE ORIGINALLY DESIGNED 1927-1929 this ...
Christie's
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Nov 04, 2014 8
EILEEN GRAY (1879-1976)
EILEEN GRAY (1879-1976)
EILEEN GRAY (1879-1976) A PAIR OF ‘TRANSAT’ ARMCHAIR CHAIRS, ORIGIN...
Christie's
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sep 12, 2009 9
EILEEN GRAY Lota sofa upholstered...
EILEEN GRAY Lota sofa upholstered...
143 EILEEN GRAY Lota sofa upholstered... EILEEN GRAY Lota sofa upho...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Jan 14, 2011 10
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of chrome and...
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of chrome and...
4A EILEEN GRAY; Pair of chrome and... EILEEN GRAY; Pair of chrome a...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Apr 19, 2013 11
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of E1027 tables,...
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of E1027 tables,...
7 EILEEN GRAY; Pair of E1027 tables,... EILEEN GRAY; Pair of E1027 ...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Apr 16, 2016 12
STYLE OF EILEEN GRAY
STYLE OF EILEEN GRAY
1393 STYLE OF EILEEN GRAY Adjustable side table, late 20th c.; Chro...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Aug 09, 2016 13
Eileen Gray: Table lamp of patinated brass and black lacquered metal decorated with grooves. Manufactured mid 1940s by Jumo.
Eileen Gray: Table lamp of patinated brass...
Table lamp of patinated brass and black lacquered metal decorated w...
Bruun Rasmussen
Est: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Aug 10, 2016 14
Eileen Gray, Sofa 'Lota', für ClassiCon
Eileen Gray, Sofa 'Lota', für ClassiCon
Eileen Gray, sofa 'Lota', for ClassiCon. Draft of 1924. Sol...
Lauritz
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Jan 15, 2016 15
Eileen Gray. Table Lamp
Eileen Gray. Table Lamp
Eileen Gray table lamp, from 1930-40. Made of brass and painted met...
Lauritz
Est: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sep 12, 2009 16
EILEEN GRAY Pair of adjustable side...
EILEEN GRAY Pair of adjustable side...
144 EILEEN GRAY Pair of adjustable side... EILEEN GRAY Pair of adju...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Jun 18, 2010 17
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of adjustable...
EILEEN GRAY; Pair of adjustable...
1003 EILEEN GRAY; Pair of adjustable... EILEEN GRAY; Pair of adjust...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Jun 18, 2010 18
STYLE OF EILEEN GRAY; Pair of...
STYLE OF EILEEN GRAY; Pair of...
1007 STYLE OF EILEEN GRAY; Pair of... STYLE OF EILEEN GRAY; Pair of...
RagoArts
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Dec 03, 2016 19
EILEEN GRAY
EILEEN GRAY
- Z41 Design - Saturday 03 December 2016 11.30 AM EILEEN GRAY (187...
Koller
Est: CHF ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: CHF ... (Get with premium)
Nov 21, 2016 20
Eileen Gray
Eileen Gray
VASE, PIÈCE UNIQUE, VERS 1920 A UNIQUE PINE AND LACQUER VASE, CIRCA...
Sotheby's
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Advertisement
Watches 300x600
Nov 22, 2016 22
Eileen Gray
Eileen Gray
TABLE, VERS 1930-1950 A BLACK LACQUERED WOOD AND METAL OCCASIONAL T...
Sotheby's
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Nov 17, 2009 23
Eileen GRAY (1879-1976) (MODèle de) Fauteuil 'Bibendum', édition circa 1990, piétement en métal tubulaire chromé présentant un arc de cercle d'où s'échappe trois montants soutenant la structure d'assise en fer à cheval, dossier formé de deux arcs de cercle cylindriques superposés, l'ensemble recouvert de cuir noir piqué sellier. Haut. 77 cm - Larg. 92 cm - Prof. 79 cm
Eileen GRAY (1879-1976) (MODèle de) Fauteu...
Estimation : 2,000-3,000
Tajan
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Oct 15, 2008 24
CATALOGUE DE VENTE Catalogue de vente Collection Eileen Gray, Sotheby's, Monte Carlo, 25 mai 1980.
Apr 23, 2008 25
Eileen GRAY (d'après)
Eileen GRAY (d'après)
Lampe de bureau orientable. Haut. 36 cm. Quelques rayures. Estimati...
Tajan
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Nov 14, 2007 26
(D'après EILEEN GRAY). Une table déployable, piétement en tube d'acier chromé, Edition Ecart International. Dim. : 74 x 69 x 64 cm.
Nov 14, 2007 27
(D'après EILEEN GRAY). Un guéridon de forme circulaire constitué de tubes de métal chromé, plateau ajustable centré d'une vitre, Edition Ecart International. Haut. minimal 63 cm, diam. 51 cm.
Mar 31, 2016 28
Eileen GRAY (attribué à)
Eileen GRAY (attribué à)
Prototype d'essai, circa 1920, grand fauteuil bas à structure en bo...
Tajan
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
May 15, 2012 29
Eileen GRAY (1879-1976) & ECART INTERNATIONAL (Éditeur) Paire de sièges 'Transat', modèle dessiné en 1925, réédition des années 1980, à structure moderniste architecturée en sycomore, sabots, entretoise et fixations en métal nickelé, l'assise et le dosseret mobiles sont tendus d'un cuir camel piqué sellier, formant succession de coussinets hémicylindriques. Haut. 79 cm - Larg. 55 cm - Prof. 105,5 cm
Eileen GRAY (1879-1976) & ECART INTERNATIO...
Estimation : 5,000-8,000 Bibliographie : - George de Bure, 'Le mob...
Tajan
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Nov 22, 2006 30
Eileen GRAY (attribué à)
Eileen GRAY (attribué à)
Chaise, structure formée de tubes de métal anciennement laqué gris,...
Tajan
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Nov 22, 2006 31
Eileen GRAY (attribué à)
Eileen GRAY (attribué à)
Prototype, étude de structure de table. Piètement tubulaire, montan...
Tajan
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Nov 22, 2006 32
Eileen GRAY (attribué à)
Eileen GRAY (attribué à)
Prototype d'essai, circa 1920, grand fauteuil bas à structure en bo...
Tajan
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sep 14, 2003 33
Eileen Gray Monographs (6)
Eileen Gray Monographs (6)
Eileen Gray Monographs (6) Eileen Gray, Chronicle Books, San Fran...
Wright
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Mar 21, 2016 34
Eileen Gray, Chair ‘Transat‘, Ecart International Paris, 1925
Eileen Gray, Chair ‘Transat‘, ...
Wood, black lacquered; metal, nickel-plated; upholstered, black lea...
Auctionata
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sep 20, 2016 35
Eileen Gray: Side table with chromed steel frame. Circular top of clear glass. Manufactured by Arams Design, London.
Eileen Gray: Side table with chromed steel...
Side table with chromed steel frame. Circular top of glass. Manufac...
Bruun Rasmussen
Est: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: DKK ... (Get with premium)
May 18, 2016 36
Chromed cocktail table by Eileen Gray
Chromed cocktail table by Eileen Gray
Chromed cocktail table designed by Eileen Gray, replica of the Adju...
Lauritz
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Apr 21, 2016 37
MODERATION. "Centimeter", Blackboard rug, Hand tufted, 246.5 x 228.5 cm, after design by Eileen Gray.
MODERATION. "Centimeter", Blackb...
Eileen Gray designed some of the great furniture classics during th...
Bukowskis
Est: SEK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: SEK ... (Get with premium)
Feb 09, 2016 38
Eileen Gray. Pair of adjustable occasional tables, model E 1027 (2)
Eileen Gray. Pair of adjustable occasional...
Eileen Gray 1878-1976. Two adjustable occasional tables, model E 10...
Lauritz
Est: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Oct 04, 2016 39
Eileen Gray: Side table with chromed steel frame. Circular top of clear glass. Manufactured by Arams Design, London.
Eileen Gray: Side table with chromed steel...
Side table with chromed steel frame. Circular top of clear glass. M...
Bruun Rasmussen
Est: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Oct 15, 2013 40
Eileen GRAY - Fauteuil 'Transat' - Edition Ecart International
Eileen GRAY - Fauteuil 'Transat' - Edition...
Eileen GRAY Fauteuil 'Transat' - Edition Ecart International à stru...
Artcurial
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Oct 04, 2016 41
Eileen Gray: Side table with chromed steel frame. Circular top of clear glass. Manufactured by Arams Design, London.
Eileen Gray: Side table with chromed steel...
Side table with chromed steel frame. Circular top of clear glass. S...
Bruun Rasmussen
Est: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Advertisement
Watches 300x600
Mar 29, 2016 43
Eileen Gray, carpet model 'Kilkenny' for Aram Designs, 203 x 238 cm
Eileen Gray, carpet model 'Kilkenny' for A...
Eileen Gray, carpet model 'Kilkenny' for Aram Designs, wool, handkn...
Lauritz
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Jun 08, 2000 44
A METAL SIDE CHAIR
A METAL SIDE CHAIR
A METAL SIDE CHAIR Eileen Gray, circa 1926 32¼in. (81.9cm.) high
Christie's
Est: USD ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: USD ... (Get with premium)
Jun 12, 2012 45
Eileen GRAY (1878 - 1976) - MEUBLE DE RANGEMENT - Circa 1930
Eileen GRAY (1878 - 1976) - MEUBLE DE RANG...
Eileen GRAY (1878 - 1976) MEUBLE DE RANGEMENT - Circa 1930 en bois ...
Artcurial
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
May 05, 2016 46
Eileen Gray. Pair of adjustable occasional tables, model E 1027 (2)
Eileen Gray. Pair of adjustable occasional...
Eileen Gray 1878-1976. Two adjustable occasional tables, model E 10...
Lauritz
Est: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Jan 16, 2016 47
Eileen Gray. Pair of adjustable occasional table, model E 1027
Eileen Gray. Pair of adjustable occasional...
Eileen Gray 1878-1976. Two adjustable occasional tables, model E 10...
Lauritz
Est: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: DKK ... (Get with premium)
Oct 07, 2014 48
EILEEN GRAY (d'après) Eileen GRAY & ÉCART INTERNATIONAL (éditeur) - Ta
EILEEN GRAY (d'après) Eileen GRAY & ÉCART ...
EILEEN GRAY (d'après) Eileen GRAY & ÉCART INTERNATIONAL (éditeur) T...
Artcurial
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Mar 17, 2015 49
Eileen GRAY (d'après) - 'Méditerranée'
Eileen GRAY (d'après) - 'Méditerranée'
Eileen GRAY (d'après) 'Méditerranée' Tapis rectangulaire en laine d...
Artcurial
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Apr 28, 2014 50
Eileen GRAY (d'après un modèle de) - Paire de tables 'E1027'
Eileen GRAY (d'après un modèle de) - Paire...
Eileen GRAY (d'après un modèle de) Paire de tables 'E1027' en métal...
Artcurial
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
May 23, 2011 51
Eileen GRAY (1878-1976) - Boîte
Eileen GRAY (1878-1976) - Boîte
Eileen GRAY (1878-1976) Boîte cylindrique en bois laqué brun, à l'i...
Artcurial
Est: EUR ... (Get with premium)
Sold for: EUR ... (Get with premium)
← Previous 1