For the first time in 50 years, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s landmark Farnsworth House will be outfitted with furniture and decor belonging to its namesake client Dr Edith Farnsworth.
The installation, Edith Farnsworth Reconsidered, explores the legacy and heritage of the glass pavilion’s original inhabitant and draws on archival photographs by Hedrich-Blessing, André Kertész and Werner Blaser taken of its interiors in the 1950s.
Farnsworth was a prominent research physician and commissioned Van Der Rohe to design the weekend retreat for her in Plano, Illinois, in 1951. A fan of Scandinavian design, she furnished the modernist home with pieces by Florence Knoll, Jens Risom, Bruno Mathsson as well as Italian designer Franco Albini, and a Chinese and Japanese antiques, which have been replicated and reinstated for the show.
Farnsworth lived at the single-storey modernist home throughout the 1950s and 60s. In 1970 it was bought by Baron Peter Palumbo, who outfitted it with furniture by Mies van der Rohe and Dirk Lohan.
Edith Farnsworth Reconsidered runs until December 2021. Those further afield can also take a VR tour of the home (complete with annotated descriptions of the furnishings).