Richard Schultz's outdoor coffee tables have been serving al fresco lunches and poolside drinks for over 50 years. And they've never looked more fresh.
Richard Schultz: "In October 1962 I began working on an aluminum outdoor group. Florence Knoll moved to Florida and said, 'You have to make some decent outdoor furniture, something that is made out of materials that won’t rust and corrode.' That appealed to me, and I started working.
"I experimented with button connectors for the slings, padded slings and plastic beading around the tabletops. Ultimately I devised concealed connectors, which made the chairs more elegant.
"In April 1963 Florence Knoll approved the outdoor program. I had to develop all the patterns for all the cast parts. It took me a long time to develop the collection, as there wasn’t a whole team of people to help me. Details were carefully considered. We spent so much time refining it. That’s why the furniture still looks fresh.
"In March 1966 the furniture was introduced. The furniture didn’t have extraneous curves. Most outdoor furniture those days was designed to look like it was designed before the French Revolution, with stamped out metal, bunches of flowers and leaves; it was very much period looking furniture. This was the first outdoor furniture that enthusiasts of modern design could say, 'this is a breath of fresh air.'"
- Tabletop is white porcelain enamel on steel
- Frame is welded cast and extruded aluminum finished in weather resistant polyester powder coat
- Stainless steel supports and connectors
- Height: 38.1 cm / 15 inch
- Width: 228.6 cm / 90 inch
- Depth: 96.5 cm / 38 inch
- Glides included
- Greenguard Indoor Air Quality Certified®
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Richard Schultz joined Knoll Associates in 1951 to work with Harry Bertoia, after studying at Iowa State University and the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. In addition to his work for Knoll, he designed an office system for Stow/Davis. He also taught basic design at the Philadelphia College of Art and had a one-man show of his sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art, New York. www.knoll.com
Richard Schultz 1966 Collection Coffee Table - 90" x 38" Designed by:
- Richard Schultz
Richard Schultz has long been an integral part of the Knoll story. After studying mechanical engineering and design at Iowa State University and the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, Schultz joined Knoll in 1951. His first assignment was to assist Harry Bertoia on the development and production of the Bertoia Wire Collection.
Schultz is best known for his outdoor furniture designs. His graceful Petal Tables, introduced in 1960, received the design award from Industrial Design Magazine. The steel wire-formed 715 Chaise Lounge, which was introduced the following year to complement the Bertoia collection, was selected in 1963 by the Museum of Modern Art for its permanent collection of contemporary furniture. After Florence Knoll moved to a seaside home in Florida, she started sending the design team rusty pieces of furniture, asking them to develop something that could perform in the salty climate. Schultz responded with the aluminum Leisure Collection in 1966.
After leaving Knoll, Schultz continued to have a successful career designing outdoor collections for his own studio. Knoll acquired Richard Schultz Design in 2012, enabling the re-release many of Schultz’s classic Knoll designs.