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Lawrence Laske at Wright: Design Studio & Collected Works

Before we began Sight Unseen five years ago, Monica and I worked for the beautiful but now-defunct design magazine I.D. And though we were helping to run one of the most venerable design publications in the country, in hindsight, we were mere babies in terms of our design education. Which is perhaps why, when we received an entry to our annual competition for a molded plastic beach chair by a designer named Larry Laske back in 2008, the name failed to ring a bell. But maybe it wasn’t purely our ignorance. After all, Laske is the classic case of a behind-the-scenes designer who ought to be much more famous than he is. The creative mind behind two classic pieces for Knoll in his own right (the ‘90s-era Toothpick and Saguaro tables), Laske also worked for years alongside Ettore Sottsass, and designed incredible prototypes with some of the world’s most famous designers: Ingo Maurer, Philippe Starck, and Matteo Thun, among them.

Next week at Wright, an online-only auction will be held to benefit Laske’s foundation, A Brain Tumor and A Dream. The auction consists of 187 lots, and it comprises one of the best and most inspiring auction catalogues we’ve ever seen. (Not technically an exhibition, we know, but so comprehensive it ought to be!) In it, Laske’s collection of drawings, sketchbooks, models, and prototypes mix with works by more than 100 other designers whom Laske met and collaborated with over the years: a Boym Partners centerpiece, a Sottsass telephone, and an Alessandro Mendini serigraph that we’re thisclose to putting an offer on. Happy bidding!

103_1
Lawrence Laske and Ettore Sottsass
Collection of four calculator drawings for Sottsass Associati
Italy, 1987
239_1
Lawrence Laske
Elastico lamp and model
Memphis
USA/Italy, 1987
160_1
Lawrence Laske and Ingo Maurer
Testi table lamp archive
111_1
Lawrence Laske
Collection of nine corkscrews
c. 1910
197_1
Lawrence Laske
Lamp model and drawings for Memphis
USA, c. 1987
135_1
George Sowden
Untitled
Italy, 1983
100_1
Lawrence Laske
Table Lamp
Nove
USA, 1987
104_1
Michele De Lucchi
Model of House no. 255
Italy, 2012
105_1
Lawrence Laske
Prototype table for ICFF
Whitermore
USA, 2005

Nathalie du Pasquier
Untitled
France, 2013 
273_1
Sottsass Associati
Enorme telephone
Brondi Telefonia S.p.A.
Italy, 1986
177_1
Lawrence Laske
Drawing no. 4
USA, 1982
112_1
Lawrence Laske
Lighting model and drawings for Artemide
USA, 1988
232_1
Lawrence Laske
Beach thingy archive, patent, and tooling
USA, 2004
240_1
Lawrence Laske
Sbarra lamp and model
Memphis
USA/Italy, 1987
269_1
Alessandro Mendini
Untitled
Italy, 2003