International Decorative Art

Mesa Coffee Table

Mesa Coffee Table

Design Date 1950s

Designer T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings (1905-1976, American, b. England)

Manufacturer Widdicomb Furniture Company (1865-present), Grand Rapids, MI

Media walnut wood

Dimensions 16 1/2 x 72 1/2 x 49 inches

In the 1950s, at the time of this table’s design, Robsjohn-Gibbings experimented with biomorphic forms, or forms that draw from nature. This Mesa Coffee Table is meant to evoke the natural mesas of the American Southwest. Robsjohn-Gibbings was born in England but settled in New York for work in the 1930s. He strove to promote American Modernism that drew on designs with a strong American identity. He saw this as including the work of Frank Lloyd Wright and the simplified lines and designs of the American Arts & Crafts and Art Deco movements. The use of wood and the lyrical lines of this Mesa Coffee Table show Arts & Crafts influences. Robsjohn-Gibbings also reveled in Greek design, and although Greek classicism is not readily apparent in the Mesa Coffee Table, tenets of Greek design such as movement and effortlessness are part of his work. The Mesa Coffee Table was designed for Widdicomb and featured in their showroom. It was also shown on the May 1952 cover of House Beautiful.

ON VIEW in Modern Gallery 7

Markings Bottom has "4/58 1760-6" stenciled in black and silver metal rectangular label, "WIDDICOMB designed by T.H. ROBSJOHN-GIBBINGS

Credit Line Collection Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art

Accession Number 2015.0691