The Heller Story
Heller is best-known today as a maker of contemporary designer furniture. So it might be surprising that the company was actually founded on a set of stackable melamine dinnerware. Designed by Massimo Vignelli in 1971, the dinnerware's innovative material and configuration earned it numerous awards and permanent inclusion in the MoMA New York design collection. It also established Heller as a manufacturer focused on good design. This reputation was sealed when Heller launched its furniture division in 1998 with the Bellini Chair by Mario Bellini. Today, Heller produces a select range of modern tables and seating in both the U.S and Europe.
Why We Love Heller FurnitureIn addition to producing faithful reissues of design classics from the 1960s and 1970s, Heller also works with contemporary designers to create original furnishings that meet their concise 3-part mission: "good design, industrial production and reasonable prices." To that end, for more than 35 years Heller has collaborated with designers like Massimo and Lella Vignelli, Vico Magistretti, Frank Gehry and Mario Bellini to create ultracontemporary pieces using ultracontemporary materials and manufacturing methods. The results range from clean and versatile to playfully artistic and wholly unexpected.
A Fun Fact About Heller
The first chair Heller released remains the most lauded. The Bellini Chair won the ID Annual Design Review Design Distinction Award (1999), IDEA Industrial Design Excellence Award (Bronze, 1999), and the Compasso d'Oro (2001). Over the years, it has also been chosen to furnish high-profile events at MoMA New York, the Cooper-Hewitt, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Cleveland Museum of Art, the Museum of Applied Art in Frankfurt and others.
Noteworthy Products from Heller
The mouth-shaped Bocca sofa was originally designed in 1970 by Studio 65, and is now considered an iconic representation of furniture as Pop Art. It was reissued in 2004 with the signature bowtie mouth molded out of soft and water-resistant lipstick red resin. In conjunction with that re-release, Studio 65 also designed the petite, puckered Kiss, a one-seater made out of the same resin. Now that's some furniture worth talking about.