JOHN GRAZ (1891-1980)
Set of eight armchairs
Jacaranda wood, cane
56 cm x 53 cm x 68h cm (44,5 cm seat height)
22,04 in x 20,86 in x 26,77h in (17,5 in seat height)
Private collection, Sao Paulo
John Graz entered the architecture, decoration and design course at the Geneva School of Fine Arts in 1910, where he is a student of Eugène Gilliard, Gabriel Vernet and Daniel Baud-Bovy. He is also a disciple of Edouard Ravel. While traveling to Paris, she becomes acquainted with the work of Paul Cézanne and Ferdinand Hodler and comes into contact with cubism, fauvism and futurism.
He moved to Brazil in 1920 and got married with Regina Gomide, a Brazilian lady. Through Oswald de Andrade, the couple become part of the intellectual life of the city.
Since 1923, he has executed home decoration projects: he creates numerous stained glass windows and designs furniture and pieces such as doors, locks, lamps, rugs and frescoes. He is considered, with Regina and Antonio Gomide, one of the introductors of the art deco style in São Paulo. He worked with newly arrived Gregori Warchavchik decorating the houses designed by the Russian architect. In 1925 Graz introduced tubular furniture in Sao Paulo.
When designing the furniture, it predicts its distribution in space and its relationship with panels, stained glass and frescoes. The integration of the elements is a characteristic of the houses decorated by Graz: the same proposal extends from the painted panels to the furniture, objects and lighting. The Cunha Bueno residence is an example of his pioneering spirit: for decoration, the artist even elaborated the geometric design of the garden floor. However, the incipience of Brazilian industry made it impossible to transform John Graz’s prototypes into large-scale utensils.