George Nelson

George Nelson

Pioneering mid-century style, George Nelson's quirky furniture, lighting and homewares brought modernism to American homes. Find his iconic sunburst wall clock and other modern wall clock designs here in our collection.

Together with Charles & Ray Eames, George Nelson (1908-1986) was one of the founding fathers of American modernism. Born in Hartford Connecticut in 1908, Nelson was part of a generation of architects who revolutionised product, graphic and interior design transforming everyday objects into works of art.

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“Design is a response
to social change.”

George Nelson


Born in Hartford Connecticut in 1908, Nelson was one of the founding fathers of American modernism. Together with Charles & Ray Eames, Nelson was part of a generation of architects who revolutionised product, graphic and interior design transforming everyday objects into works of art.
Having graduated with a degree in Architecture at Yale University in 1928, Nelson was a firm believer in the modernist movement, whose core principles of form and functionality he applied fastidiously to every one of his designs.
Despite such a hard-line approach, Nelson’s sculpted designs caught the American public’s imagination, and in 1945 he was appointed design director at leading furniture and homewares manufacturer Herman Miller.

Vitra Designer Furniture Lighting Home AccessoriesModernica Designer Lighting


Design Timeline

George Nelson Ball Clock Vitra



1949 - Ball Clock


Capturing the joie de vivre of 1950s design, the Ball Clock was the first in a series of playful timepieces Nelson designed throughout the decade that have since become mid-century classics.
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George Nelson Coconut Chair Vitra

1955 - Coconut Chair


Moulded from a durable glass fibre reinforced plastic, the unusual shape of this chair mimics that of a coconut cracked in half and is upholstered with luxurious black leather.
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George Nelson Home Desk Vitra



1958 - Home Desk


Combining rich walnut, polished chrome and colourful elements, the Home Desk's slender silhouette is typical of mid-century design and features a series of concealed storage compartments.
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