The Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum has announced that Maharam is the recipient of the 2007 Design Patron Award, one of ten National Design Awards presented annually by the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum.
The National Design Awards were conceived in 1997 by the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum to honor the best in American design. First launched at the White House in 2000 as an official project of the White House Millennium Council, the annual Awards program celebrates design in various disciplines as a vital humanistic tool in shaping the world, and seeks to increase national awareness of design by educating the public and promoting excellence, innovation, and lasting achievement. The Awards are truly national in scope–nominations for the 2007 Awards were solicited from a committee of more than 800 leading designers, educators, journalists, cultural figures, and corporate leaders from every state in the nation. The Design Patron Award was created to recognize outstanding support and patronage within the design community; the recipient is chosen by the director of the Cooper-Hewitt, Paul Thompson.
Maharam, a fourth generation family-run business, was founded in 1902. First renowned as a supplier of theatrical textiles, in the 1960s Maharam pioneered the contract textile concept, developing engineered textiles for commercial application. Today, Maharam pursues a holistic approach to design, embracing a range of disciplines as fundamental to the Maharam business philosophy, including architecture and interiors, furniture, fashion, accessories, graphic and digital design.
The Maharam Design Studio is responsible for the development of Maharam’s extensive textile collection, including re-editions of significant historic textiles drawn from the archives of 20th Century designers such as Anni Albers, Charles and Ray Eames, Josef Hoffmann, Koloman Moser, Dagobert Peche and Gio Ponti; and collaborations with contemporary designers such as Dutch industrial designer Hella Jongerius, Canadian graphic designer Bruce Mau, New York-based illustrator Maira Kalman, and British fashion designer Paul Smith. Maharam is also recognized for its commitment to the environment, both in their business practices and product development, and its exploration of new technologies and creation of high-performance textiles.