Bill Stumpf – Rest in Peace…

To all you dot-commers who spent tons of money on truckloads of Aeron Ergonomic Office Chairs back in the day, please stand up and salute Bill Stumpf, who died late last month at the age of 70. This industrial designer was made famous by his 1994 Aeron chair, which has made the drudgery of an eight hour work day a fair bit more bearable. Even from the beginning Stumpf’s chef d’oeuvre earned it a place in the Museum of Modern Art in New York, one month before it was released to the public at a trade show in September 1994. More recently, in an interview with The New York Times, Bill Dowell, a former partner of Stumpf’s at Herman Miller, recalled that Stumpf delayed production of the first Aeron chair by a whole year because a woman testing the chair had to get up to adjust it. Stumpf will be posthumously presented with the National Design Award in Product Design on October 18 in New York.

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