The Eames Office Legacy

A glimpse back at the Eames Office since 1988 shows how the legacy of Charles and Ray Eames has been preserved, communicated, and extended.

Eames Office since 1988

Just over eighty years ago, Charles and Ray Eames founded the Eames Office, the design studio and workshop where they created some of the most significant achievements of 20th-century design. After their deaths, the Eames Office, which is still run by the Eames family today, transformed into a cultural-commercial project dedicated to preserving, communicating, and expanding one of the world’s most influential design legacies.

In addition to the Eames Office as the central institution and the Eames Foundation, founded by the family in 2004, the project also includes several long-standing partners from industry, academia, and the museum sector who are committed to the work of Charles and Ray Eames. Now the Eames Institute joins this network as a new partner institution.

A look back over the last 35 years shows the many ways in which the legacy of Charles and Ray Eames has been safeguarded, shared with future generations, and given new life.


1988 – Charles’ daughter Lucia Eames becomes owner of Eames Office, asserts her intention to continue the work of the office.

1988 – Grandson Eames Demetrios becomes Director of the Eames Office.

1988 – Film 901 after 45 years of working, by Eames Demetrios, documents the closing of Charles and Ray’s design studio in Venice, CA.

1988 – Eames Office Oral Histories Project records over 200 hours of interviews with former Eames Office staff and friends of the Eameses (until 1996).

1988 – Library of Congress receives close to one million documents, plans and photographs from 901.

1989 – Eames Office closes 901 West Washington Boulevard and moves operations to Eames House.

1989 – Vitra Design Museum acquires large collection of prototypes from 901.

1989 – Charles’ office from 901 gifted to Vitra Design Museum.

1989 – 901 Conference and projection room acquired by San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

1989 – 901 Entrance Room goes to Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

1989 – Plywood Glider Nose prototype enters collection of New York Museum of Modern Art.

1989 – A large collection of objects, prototypes, process documents, toys, books, photographs, and tools from 901 remains with the Eames family.

1989 Eames Design, a large monographic publication initiated by Ray in 1982, is published by Abrams.

1989 – Eames Office begins releasing the Eames Films on Home video–later on other formats.

1989 – Eames Office re-introduces Eames House of Cards with historic partner Ravensburger.


1990 – Eames Office partners with Vitra to launch 1948 La Chaise for the first time.

1991 – Film 901 after 45 Years of Working selected for Sundance Film Festival.

1991 – Vitra Design Museum launches Miniatures Collection of Eames designs.

1993 – Lucia Eames and second husband Aristides Demetrios move from San Francisco to Petaluma and into the ranch complex constructed from 1991 to 1994 (Architect: William Turnbull).

1993 – Eames Office participates in launch of Herman Miller for the Home Collection.

1994 – Production begins on Powers of Ten Interactive CD-ROM developed, designed and produced by Eames Office.  Published by DATTJapan and Pyramid Media.

1997The Work of Charles and Ray Eames, the first major posthumous Eames exhibition opens at the Vitra Design Museum and later travels to 17 venues in 9 countries. Eames Office designs and produces the multimedia component (5 hours of video on about 2 dozen screens).

1997 – Eames Office Powers of Ten Interactive CD-ROM released first in Japanese market.

1998 – Exhibition Powers of Ten curated by Eames Office; exhibition later travels to 11 cities in 5 countries.

1998Powers of Ten inducted in the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress.

1999 – Limited Edition Gold Leaf Table celebrates Eames House’s 50th Anniversary.

1999 – Eames Office opens a gallery in Santa Monica, begins exhibition program (7 exhibitions in that space–including first Ray Exhibition).

1999 – Eames Office enters partnership with Maharam for upholstery fabrics.

1999 – Eames Office publishes 15 Things Charles and Ray Teach Us by Keith Yamashita.


2000Changing Her Palette: Paintings by Ray Eames, edited by Eames Demetrios, Published by Eames Office.

2000 – Eames Office works with Herman Miller and Vitra to re-launch Shell Chair in Polypropylene.

2001 – The Library of Congress publishes the first part of the Eames Digital Archive.

2001 – Eames Office supports traveling tour of Los Angeles edition of Eames Office Mathematica exhibition, concluding with permanent placement at New York Hall of Science.

2001 An Eames Primer, Eames Demetrios, Universe Publishers (Second Edition in 2013).

2002 – Grandson Byron Atwood becomes Manager of the Eames Office.

2002 – Eames Office partners on Eames Design exhibition at Ueno Museum in Tokyo.

2003 – Granddaughter Llisa Demetrios begins work as Archivist at Eames Office.

2004 – Granddaughter Carla Hartman joins Eames Office as Director of Education.

2004 – Eames Office rescues the entirety of a Mathematica exhibition at a closed museum. Eames Office restores it–ultimately looking for a permanent home.

2004 – Launch of Vitra Home with re-edited Eames designs as central pieces.

2004 – Eames Foundation established at Eames House (founding sponsors: Eames Office, Herman Miller and Vitra).

2004 – Eames Office opens Gallery on 850 Pico, Santa Monica; numerous gallery exhibitions.

2006 – Eames House becomes a National Historic Landmark.

2006Eames 50th Anniversary Lounge Chair and Ottoman exhibition at Melbourne Design Festival curated by Carla Hartman.

2006 – A second Eames Lounge Chair Exhibition travels to 3 US cities (New York, Grand Rapids and Detroit).  Eames Office creates video component of exhibition.

2006 – Neenah launches series of Eames paper.

2007The Gifted Eye of Charles Eames Traveling show. Curated and organized by Eames Office, it has been displayed in 6 countries.

2007Eames Office: Then and Now exhibit at Eames Office Gallery curated by Carla Hartman.

2007Eames 100: This is the Trick at Emmanuel Gallery, Denver, Colorado, curated by Carla Hartman.

2007 – Eames Elephant developed and launched to celebrate Charles Eames 100th birthday.

2007 – Eames Office creates a new animated film, A Gathering of Elephants, to celebrate the Elephant launch and Charles Centennial.

2007 – Byron Atwood gives lecture at Eames Office to honor Charles Centennial.

2007100 Quotes by Charles Eames, collected by Carla Hartman and Eames Demetrios, Published by Eames Office.

2007Charles Eames, Part 1: St.Louis to California exhibit at Eames Office Gallery curated by Carla Hartman.

2007 – TED Mainstage Talk The design genius of Charles + Ray Eames delivered by Eames Demetrios.

2008 – US Postal Service honorary edition of Charles and Ray Eames stamps.

2008 – Eames Office presents a Powers of Ten Thinking and Education program based on the classic film.

2008Charles Eames, Part 2: California to the World exhibit at Eames Office Gallery curated by Carla Hartman.

2008 – Over more than five years of research and exploration, Eames Office works with Vitra and Herman Miller to enrich the Eames Lounge Chair offering, both in finishes and by providing a tall size.

2008Much More Than Four Legs: A Closer Look at Chairs exhibit at Star Gallery in Indianapolis, Indiana.

2008Ray Eames exhibit honoring Ray Eames, ADC Hall of Fame laureate for 2008 at The Art Directors Club, New York City.

2008Ray Eames: Notes for a Celebration exhibit at Eames Office Gallery curated by Carla Hartman.


2010 – Lucia Atwood starts working at Eames Foundation and later becomes the Foundation’s Director in 2014.

2010 – Eames Foundation begins 250 year project.

2010Powers of Ten exhibit at Eames Office Gallery.

2011 – Eames House Living Room Displayed at LACMA for Getty Pacific Standard Time Exhibition with support of Eames Office.

2011Eames: Beautiful Details book, written by the 2nd and 3rd generation.

2011 – Documentary film Eames: The Architect and the Painter.

2011 – Eames Office curates Essential Eames: The Design of Knowledge exhibition for Asian countries; traveling exhibition still ongoing in 2022.

2011 – 4th generation joins the Eames Office: Ross Atwood, Jackie Cassel.

2011 – Eames Office creates Eames Words exhibition with A plus D Museum.

2011 – Exhibition The Gifted Eye of Charles Eames presents photographic work in Asia and the US.

2012 – Eames Foundation receives support of Getty Conservation Institute in Eames House conservation.

2012Addressing the Need: The Graphic Design of the Eames Office at PM Gallery & House, London, UK, curated by Carla Hartman.

2013 – Eames Office moves to Washington Blvd, Los Angeles; gallery space is moved online.

2013 – Special Edition of Essential Eames exhibition opens in Singapore.

2014 – Exhibition Ray Eames in the Spotlight, curated by Eames Office, opens in Pasadena, California.

2014 – 55th Anniversary of Glimpses of the USA celebrated with screening in Moscow.

2014 – Death of Lucia Eames.

2015The World of Charles and Ray Eames exhibition at the Barbican Gallery, London, co-created by Eames Office.

2015 – Eames Office publishes An Eames Anthology with Yale University Press.

2016 – Lucia Eames home in Petaluma is sold to a non-profit organization.

2017 – Eames Office finds a permanent home for rescued Mathematica Exhibition (see 2004). Restored and installed at The Henry Ford Museum, Dearborn, Michigan.

2017Glimpses of the U.S.A is restored by the Library of Congress and The Film Foundation, with funding by the George Lucas Family Foundation. 

2017Essential Eames – Words & Pictures, edited by Eames Demetrios and Carla Hartman, published by Vitra Design Museum.

2017 – Eames Celebration on Vitra Campus. In addition to the Barbican Show in the Vitra Design Museum, there are exhibitions at the VDM Gallery, the Fire Station, and Shaudepot.

2017Eames Furniture Sourcebook is published, detailing the Eames Collection at the Vitra Design Museum. 

2019 – Getty Conservation Institute publishes the Eames House Conservation Management Plan.

2019 – Eames Family Collection is sold to a non-profit institution; Eames family donates substantial part of proceeds to Eames Foundation’s 250 Year project.


2021 – Eames Office and Reebok announce sneaker collaboration.

2021 – Eames Office builds a 1:12 scale architectural model of the 1951 Eames Modular House, recontextualizing a pioneering mid-century effort towards prefabricated housing in a contemporary setting.

2021 – Lucia Eames art and designs are archived.

2021 – Exhibition Eames Office: 80 Years of Design at Isetan Gallery, Tokyo.

2021 – Eames Office and Globe partner to release limited-edition Eucalyptus Skateboard Deck.

2021 – Eames Office and Art of Play team up to release limited-edition designer playing cards.

2022 – Eames Office and Ravensburger extend upon a partnership beginning in the 1950s; they release a series of puzzles.

2022 – Eames Family Collection is archived and displayed at Eames Institute in Petaluma, California.

2022 – Eames Office launches the Plywood Sculpture. Limited edition of twelve.

2022 – Eames Office and Reebok release Composition Pack, based on the art of Ray Eames.

2022 – Eames Office provides ongoing support for “Ray Eames Park” planned in her birthplace, Sacramento, California.