Eva Zeisel (Hungarian, born in Budapest, Hungary 1906 — )

I have rarely designed objects that were meant to stand alone. My designs have family relationships. They are mother and child, siblings or cousins. They might not have identical lines, but there is always a family relationship.

It is safe to say that Eva Zeisel is the most prominent industrial designer of the 20th century. Originally, she hoped to become a painter but eventually decided to pursue a more practical profession and apprenticed herself to a guild of potters. Now over 100 years old, she is still designing after establishing her first studio at age 19.

In Zeisel’s eyes, angles appeal to the intellect and curves appeal to the heart. It’s this approach to design that draws people to her objects.  Her tableware is friendly and inviting. There are no harsh lines, but only soft curves. Zeisel designs in sets and families, each having its own unique personality and clearly reflecting hers.

From art nouveau to Bauhaus to biomorphism, Zeisel makes work that reflects its period, while remaining timeless. Having designed over 100,000 objects, it is amazing to imagine that her work is still so high in demand.  

Zeisel’s designs are made for use. The inspiration for her sensuous forms often comes from the natural organic curves of the body. Zeisel says that she doesn’t create angular objects; that she is a more circular person. It’s more in her character. She explains that even the air between her hands is round.