Today being Women's Day, I started thinking about the women who were and are pioneers and trail blazers in the field of design, be it architecture, interiors, furniture or fashion design. Since I'm always looking for an excuse for a list, I got right down to it. Design has always been and still is, to an extent, a very male dominated industry and these strong women, with equally strong determination, have forged the way ahead. I think their spirit of adventure and irreverence continue to make it a little easier for the rest of us women in design!
Irish architect and designer, Eileen Gray, was an important but often overlooked contributor to the modernist movement. Although overshadowed by Le Corbusier and her male counterparts during much of her career, she is credited as being a pioneer for women in the field of architecture and furniture design, inspiring several Art Deco and Bauhaus architects and designers. Her adjustable-height side table is an icon of 1920s design. Today she is considered one of the most influential modern designers.
Ray Eames was an American artist, designer, and filmmaker who, together with her husband Charles, formed the team of Charles and Ray Eames. Together, they are credited with several classic, iconic designs of the 20th century in the field of architecture and furniture design.
French fashion designer and founder of the Chanel brand, Coco Chanel was the only fashion designer to appear on Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century. Famous for the ‘little black dress’, she, along with Paul Poiret, is credited with popularizing sportive, casual chic as the feminine standard in the post-World War I era. She is a pioneer of women’s fashion as well as a pioneer for women in the design industry.
She was the Italian architect of the Musée d'Orsay in Paris and a prolific furniture, lighting and set designer, Aulenti was one of the few women working in architecture and design in postwar Italy. She is credited for designing showrooms for Fiat and Olivetti as well as sets for La Scala, the opera house in Milan.
The first woman architect who ever won the Pritzker Architecture prize- the Nobel Peace Prize of Architecture, British-Iraqi architect is considered one of the most famous female architects today. Some of her well known projects include the Phaeno Science Center in Wolfsburg , MAXXI: National Museum of 21st Century Art in Rome and the BMW Central Building in Leipzig.