Knoll, Florence

Florence Knoll, whose maiden name was Schust, was born in Michigan in 1917. She was an architect and designer internationally famous. She was orphaned at the age of twelve, and considered an artistic career at a very young age. Between 1932 and 1934 she studied arts at Kingswood School in Canbrook, Michigan. In 1934 she undertook designer Eliel Saarinen’s classes at Canbrook Academy of Art. She studied urbanism until 1939. Her style was inspired by Le Corbusier, the Bauhaus movement and the American modernists Wallace K.Harrisson, Walter Gropius, and Marcel Breuer with whom she worked. In 1941 she met Hans Knoll, a designer and CEO of a furniture factory in New York. They married in 1946. In 1951 the company‘s name changed for “Knoll International” and became selling its products worldwide. After the death of Hans in 1955, Florence took over as head of the company and added new momentum by developing the idea of the modern office incorporating         architecture and functionality to the workplace. “ Her work is quite recognizable, by the high standard and the clean pure lines of her production ” says Aurélien Serre, a Marché Serpette vendor who specializes in 1970s furniture.