Leg splint

Artist: Charles Eames (American, St. Louis, Missouri 1907–1978 St. Louis, Missouri)

Artist: Ray Eames (American, 1913–1988)

Date: 1942

Medium: Molded plywood

Dimensions: 42 1/4 x 7 7/8 x 3 1/2 in. (107.3 x 20 x 8.9 cm)

Classification: Miscellaneous-Wood

Credit Line: Gift of Fifty/50, 1984

Accession Number: 1984.246

Description

During World War II, the U.S. Navy called upon Charles and Ray Eames to create a lightweight, inexpensive leg splint. The resulting highly sculptural yet functional, modular device could be mass-produced and conveniently transported. Access to military technology and manufacturing facilities allowed the Eameses to perfect the plywood-molding technique they had been working on for several years. The splint’s biomorphic form suggests the couple’s subsequent influential plywood furniture designs.

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