Student of Cor Alons, Paul Schuitema, and Gerrit Rietveld, Rob Parry (1925) was known and loved for his curious nature and open mind towards anything modern and new. He was a versatile designer and his oeuvre stretches from typography to architecture, from interior design to exhibition design. His furniture pieces have an irresistible effortlessness about them. Their concept and construction reveal an irrefutable modern aesthetic, without ever becoming rigid.
In fact, Rob Parry had a pretty relaxed attitude towards industrial functionalism, valuing comfort and significance just as much as function and form. Contrary to many of his contemporaries, he did not blindly follow the doctrine of Stichting Goed Wonen, the popular foundation and dito magazine that propagated modernist households and aimed to educate in sophisticated taste. Never did he bluntly systemise any of his designs; instead, he constantly explored new ways of approaching shape, unconventional material and production techniques.
Rob Parry traveled a lot and was inspired by Scandinavian design and the work of Alvar Aalto. The human touch in his designs, adding a pleasant warmth and easy-going playfulness to their inherently industrial composition, define Parry’s special signature.
The designs of Rob Parry are part of numerous collections, including those of the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, and Stedelijk Museum ’s Hertogenbosch. Still today, his design for the Dutch national mailbox—together with Emile Truijen in 1957—is considered an iconic landmark.
Reference material: Ibelings, Hans. Rob Parry. Amsterdam/Montreal: Architecture Observer, 2015.
Images: © www.robparry.nl
Text: © KADER design