Eileen Gray Her Life and Work

Peter Adam

A fascinating rediscovery of the life and work of Eileen Gray, one of the twentieth century’s most important designers.

In this illustrated biography, we learn the origins of designer Eileen Gray and the details of her groundbreaking career. Gray began as a creator of opulent lacquer furniture and transformed into a pioneer of modernist design. Staying firmly independent, she developed a distinctive take on materials favored by fellow International Style designers, such as Le Corbusier, Charlotte Perriand, and Mies van der Rohe. Her talent made her an object of admiration among American expatriates such as Gertrude Stein, and her designs are now globally renowned—E-1027, the ship-shaped home she created on a cliff near Monaco, was hailed as a triumph of deluxe modern living and her Dragons chair fetched $28 million at an Yves Saint Laurent auction in 2009.

This new edition of the biography by Peter Adam, the only surviving person to have been close to Gray during her later years, is a uniquely intimate survey of her life and work. Comprehensively updated and illustrated with material from Gray’s personal archives—correspondence, photographs, and architectural sketchbooks—Eileen Gray tells the full story of her life and reveals fresh details about her largely overlooked paintings, exchanges with Le Corbusier, and the fate of E-1027, the first building she designed. This book will be a welcome resource for fans of Gray, as well as those who are interested in design.


Peter Adam


Peter Adam is a British filmmaker and author. He was born in Germany.