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Florence Knoll Bassett papers, 1932-2000

Bassett, Florence Knoll, 1917-

Designer, Architect

The papers of Florence Knoll Bassett in the Archives of American Art were digitized in 2008 and total 1,280 images. The papers have been scanned in their entirety.

Funding for the digitization of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.

Collection Information

Size: 2 Linear feet

Summary: The papers of architect and designer Florence Knoll Bassett, measure approximately 2 linear feet dating from 1932 to 2000. Through correspondence, sketches, drawings, designs, subject files, photographs, and printed material, the collection selectively documents Knoll Bassett's education, her work with Knoll Associates from the 1940s until her resignation in 1965, and projects undertaken since her retirement. It is an important source of information on the development of interior architecture and design from the 1940s to the 1970s.

Biographical/Historical Note

Florence Knoll Bassett was born Florence Schust in 1917 and was affectionately known as Shu by her colleagues and friends. She was orphaned at age 12 and then cared for by Emile Tessin, a friend of the family whom her mother had appointed as Florence's legal guardian in the event of her death. When arrangements were being made for Florence to attend boarding school she was given the opportunity to make the selection. Kingswood School in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, held a strong aesthetic appeal for her and she "made an immediate decision that it was the right place for me," beginning her architectural studies under the school's art director, Rachel de Wolfe Raseman.

Provenance

The collection was donated to the Archives of American Art by Florence Knoll Bassett in 2000.

Funding

Funding for the digitization of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.