DESIGNING WOMEN: ASTRID SAMPE
One of the aspects that put the modern in mid century modern, is that it was the first era of design in which the glass ceiling had cracked enough to allow women to assume leading roles. Obvious examples include Ray Eames, Grete Jalk and Florence Knoll. Another prominent example is Astrid Sampe, who in 1937 started a chamber of textile for Nordiska Kompaniet, and led it until 1971, when it closed. In her native Sweden, Sampe is perhaps most known for her 50’s fabric Perssons kryddskåp (Perssons Spice Cabinet), inspired by fellow designer Signe Persson-Melins spice jars. Her usual style however, was stricter, often finding inspiration in Mondrian, and as her career progressed, in computer generated fractals. Other than Nordiska Kompaniet, Sampe produced fabrics for Knoll, and after 1971, she ran her own textile studio in Stockholm. Sampe passed away in 2002, but some of her fabrics and linens are still in production.