U.S. Postal Service Honors Dynamic Design Duo

Charles and Ray Eames Stamps Issued Today

June 17, 2008 

Release No. 08-066 



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Eames stamps

To obtain high-resolution images of the stamps, e-mail michael.p.woods@usps.gov.

SANTA MONICA, CA — The work of husband and wife design team Charles and Ray Eames has one more place to call home:  your mailbox. The U.S. Postal Service today dedicated a colorful and provocative pane of 16 stamps honoring the Eameses’ significant contributions to modern design, including furniture, architecture, film and exhibits.

“Charles and Ray Eames believed that good design could improve people’s lives and encouraged the world to live simply and creatively,” said Katherine Tobin. “We hope these stamps will help their innovative legacy thrive and serve to inspire future generations of American designers.” Tobin is a member of the Postal Service Board of Governors.

Perhaps best known for their furniture, the Eameses used new materials and technology to create high-quality products that addressed everyday problems and made modern design, including the molded plywood chair, accessible to all Americans. Today, most of their furniture and many of their products still are being made and can be found in private homes and museums across the country.

“This beautifully designed collection of stamps resonates with the love of imagery that Charles and Ray shared,” said Eames Demetrios, grandson of Charles and Ray Eames. “As Charles once said, ‘Eventually everything connects.’ They would have particularly enjoyed the extraordinary connections happening through these stamps. The Eames family is deeply honored by this recognition of the life’s work of Charles and Ray.”

Designed by Derry Noyes, art director for the Postal Service, the stamps are available at Post Offices, usps.com or by calling 800-STAMP-24. Objects depicted on the stamps were selected from hundreds of items created by Charles and Ray Eames and represent the breadth of their extraordinary body of creative work:

Christmas Card
Charles and Ray Eames delighted friends and family during the holiday season with Christmas cards they designed themselves.

The Hang-It-All was designed in 1953 as an accessory for a playroom or child’s bedroom.

Crosspatch Fabric Design
Crosspatch is one of two fabric designs submitted by the couple to a 1947 competition sponsored by The Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

Stacking Chairs *
Introduced in 1955, these stacking chairs feature single-shell seats made of plastic that comfortably support the body. The simple design allows them to be stacked for storage or linked together in horizontal rows, a useful solution for temporary seating in public places.

Case Study House #8
Located in Pacific Palisades, CA, the house was completed in 1949 as part of a program to create affordable homes out of materials and technology developed during World War II.

Wire-Base Table *
Portable and practical, the petite table was ready for use anytime, indoors or outdoors.

Lounge Chair and Ottoman *
A recognizable symbol of 20th-century design, the lounge chair and ottoman modernized the traditional English armchair and became an instant bestseller.

La Chaise
Charles and Ray Eames submitted La Chaise to the 1948 International Competition for Low-Cost Furniture Design sponsored by The Museum of Modern Art in New York.

The Film Tops
For 7 minutes and 15 seconds, more than 100 tops from around the world dance and whirl across the screen to a score composed by Elmer Bernstein.

Wire Mesh Chair *
Introduced by the Eames Office in 1951, it was the first piece of American furniture to receive a mechanical patent.

Magazine Cover
Ray Eames created this cover for the May 1943 issue of California Arts & Architecture, an avant-garde design magazine based in Los Angeles.

House of Cards
Developed in 1952, the deck consists of 54 playing cards decorated with a starburst on one side and a photograph on the other.

Molded Plywood Sculpture
During the 1940s, Charles and Ray Eames experimented with a method for molding or bending pieces of wood in different directions. This abstract plywood sculpture was one of many they created as they experimented with the process.

Eames Storage Unit *
Charles and Ray Eames introduced the Eames Storage Unit (ESU) in 1950 as a sleek and practical solution to home and office organization.

Aluminum Group Chair *
The Aluminum Group Chair offered an affordable option for those seeking high-quality indoor-outdoor seating for the home or office.

Molded Plywood Chair *
One of the Eameses’ most popular designs, the chair was mass-produced using a method for bending or molding plywood that they had developed during the 1940s.

* Eames furniture designs and the associated Eames trademark are the property of Herman Miller, Inc.

How to Order First-Day-of-Issue Postmark

Customers have 60 days to obtain the first-day-of-issue postmark by mail. They may purchase new stamps at their local Post Office, at The Postal Store Web site at www.usps.com/shop, or by calling 800-STAMP-24. They should affix the stamps to envelopes of their choice, address the envelopes (to themselves or others), and place them in a larger envelope addressed to:

Charles and Ray Eames Stamps
1653 7th Street
Santa Monica, CA  90401-9998

After applying the first-day-of-issue postmark, the Postal Service will return the envelopes through the mail. There is no charge for the postmark. All orders must be postmarked by Aug. 16, 2008.

How to Order First-Day Covers

Stamp Fulfillment Services also offers first-day covers for new stamp issues and Postal Service stationery items postmarked with the official first-day-of-issue cancellation. Each item has an individual catalog number and is offered in the quarterly USA Philatelic catalog. Customers may request a free catalog by calling 800-STAMP-24 or writing to:

Information Fulfillment Dept. 6270
U.S. Postal Service
PO Box 219014
Kansas City, MO 64121-9014

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