George Nelson (USA, 1908-1986)

Architect, designer, and writer, George Nelson was a central figure in the mid-century American modernist design movement; and his thoughts influenced not only the furniture we live with, but also how we live.

     Nelson came to design via journalism and literature. Upon receiving his bachelor’s degree in architecture from Yale in 1931, he won the Prix de Rome fellowship, and spent his time in Europe writing magazine articles that helped bring stateside recognition to Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Gio Ponti, Le Corbusier and other canonical modernist architects. In the 1940s, Nelson wrote texts that suggested such now-commonplace ideas as open-plan houses, storage walls and family rooms. D.J. Depree, the owner of the furniture maker Herman Miller Inc., was so impressed by Nelson that in 1944 — following the sudden death of Gilbert Rohde, who had introduced the firm to modern design in the 1930s — he invited Nelson to join the company as its design director.

     There Nelson’s curatorial design talents came to the fore. To Herman Miller he brought such eminent creators as Charles and Ray Eames, Isamu Noguchi, and the textile and furniture designer Alexander Girard. Thanks to a clever contract, at the same time as he directed Herman Miller he formed a New York design company, George Nelson & Associates, that sold furniture designs to the Michigan firm, as well as its competitor, the Howard Miller Clock Company. Nelson’s New York team of designers (who were rarely individually credited) would create such iconic pieces as the “Marshmallow” sofa, the “Coconut” chair, the “Ball” clock, the “Bubble” lamp series and the many cabinets and beds that comprise the sleek “Thin-Edge” line.

     For dedicated collectors, as well as for interior designers who look beyond “the look,” there is a “cool-factor” inherent to vintage pieces from George Nelson and others. Nelson was in on it from the start, and it’s valuable to have a piece that was there with him. But still, as is evident from the offerings from dealers on these pages, in any of the designs, in any iteration whose manufacture Nelson oversaw and encouraged, there are shining elements of lightness, elegance, sophistication —and a little bit of swagger. George Nelson felt confident in his ideas about design and didn’t mind letting the world know.

Read more about George Nelson in Introspective Magazine

Refine
Dimensions: H 2.5 in. Dm 19 in.
Dealer Location: Philadelphia, PA
Materials & Techniques: Metal, Brass, Wood
Mid-Century Modern Vintage Original George Nelson ...
Howard Miller, George Nelson, George Nelson & Associates
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Metal, Brass, Wood
Early original starburst clock design by George Nelson and manufactured by Howard Miller Clock Company. It features brass inner body with black wooden spikes. Plugs into standard outlet...
Dimensions: H 2.5 in. Dm 11 in.
Dealer Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Materials & Techniques: Ceramic, Metal
Ceramic Meridian Wall Clock by George Nelson Howar...
George Nelson
Mid-20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Ceramic, Metal
Beautiful clock designed by George Nelson and made in Italy by Raymor for the Meridian Clock Division of Howard Miller, Original tags on the back.
Dimensions: H 7 ft. 6 in. W 5 ft. D 13 in.
Dealer Location: Brooklyn, NY
Materials & Techniques: Oak
George Nelson Grandfather Clock by Herman Miller
Herman Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Oak
Rare unit featuring a Nelson ball clock, storage cubby, and open rack plank on side. Please confirm item location (NY or NJ) with dealer.
Dimensions: H 2.75 in. Dm 19 in.
Dealer Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Materials & Techniques: Brass, Wood
George Nelson Clock for Howard Miller
George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Brass, Wood
Beautiful brass and wood clock designed by George Nelson for the Howard Miller clock company.
George Nelson Swagleg Grandfather Clock
Studio 111
Dimensions: H 5 ft. 11 in. W 13.5 in. D 12 in.
Dealer Location: Cathedral City, CA
George Nelson Swagleg Grandfather Clock
George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Manufactured by the Howard Miller clock Co. Model # 2256. Brass legs, walnut veneer, tufted velvet backdrop. This is a windup clock, key included.
Dimensions: H 31 in. Dm 12 in.
Dealer Location: West Palm Beach, FL
Materials & Techniques: Aluminum, Chrome, Lucite
Pendulum Clock by George Nelson for Howard Miller
Herman Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Aluminum, Chrome, Lucite
Pendulum wall-mounted clock by George Nelson for Howard Miller made of aluminum, chrome and Lucite. The clock has been professionally serviced in 2016. The face of the clock is 12" in d...
Dimensions: H 13.5 in. Dm 13.5 in.
Dealer Location: Newport Beach, CA
Materials & Techniques: Bog Wood, Brass
Early Original George Nelson for Howard Miller Bal...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Bog Wood, Brass
Early original George Nelson for Howard Miller ball clock. Beautiful blonde wood balls with great patina and brass spindles. Updated to a battery mechanism, still retains early Howard M...
Dimensions: H 3 in. Dm 13 in.
Dealer Location: Chicago, IL
Materials & Techniques: Brass, Wood
Vintage George Nelson White Ball Clock
George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Brass, Wood
Vintage George Nelson white ball clock.
Dimensions: H 2.38 in. Dm 12.82 in.
Dealer Location: Chicago, IL
Materials & Techniques: Glass, Metal
Clock by George Nelson Associates for Howard Mille...
Herman Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Minimalist Clocks
Glass, Metal
Wall clock model 622-223 by George Nelson Associates for Howard Miller Clock Company, 1950s. Black, white and orange. Clock glass on face and metal frame. New mechanism installed by clo...
Dimensions: H 2.75 in. Dm 13.5 in.
Dealer Location: Stamford, CT
George Nelson Ball Clock for Howard Miller
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s Clocks
In good working order, very clean original "Ball Clock," circa 1950s. With brushed brass face and blond wood balls.
Dimensions: H 6.5 in. W 5.25 in. D 4.75 in.
Dealer Location: Los Angeles, CA
Materials & Techniques: Brass, Walnut
George Nelson Chronopak Orb Desk Clock for Howard ...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Brass, Walnut
Designer: George Nelson. Manufacturer: Howard Miller. Period/Style: Mid-Century Modern. Country: United States. Date: 1950s. Dimensions: 6.5″ H x 5.25″ W x 4.75″ D. Materials: W...
Dimensions: H 2.5 in. Dm 19 in.
Dealer Location: Pasadena, CA
Materials & Techniques: Brass, Wood
Vintage George Nelson for Howard Miller Spike Cloc...
George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Brass, Wood
Iconic, vintage spike clock with key wind mechanism. Clock measures 19" diameter by 2.5" deep and is in working order. Signed on reverse Howard Miller Company, Zeeland, Michigan. In ver...
Dimensions: H 5.5 in. Dm 4.25 in.
Dealer Location: Houston, TX
Materials & Techniques: Rosewood, Steel
Arthur Umanoff Desk Clock, George Nelson & Associa...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Rosewood, Steel
George Nelson & Associates table clock. Howard Miller Clock Company, USA. Rosewood, steel. Measures: 4.25 W x 3 D x 5.5 H inches. Signed with decal manufacturer's label to r...
Dimensions: H 9 in. W 6 in. D 5.5 in.
Dealer Location: Philadelphia, PA
Materials & Techniques: Plastic, Steel
Mid-Century Modern George Nelson for Howard Miller...
Howard Miller, George Nelson, George Nelson & Associates
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Plastic, Steel
A fine tulip base pedestal clock designed by George Nelson and manufactured by Howard Miller clock company. Heavy well-made steel construction with a bubble front lens. Original "C" bat...
Dimensions: H 2.5 in. Dm 13 in.
Dealer Location: Washington, DC
Materials & Techniques: Brass, Wood
Vintage George Nelson Ball Clock for Howard Miller...
George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Brass, Wood
Classic vintage ball clock designed by George Nelson for Herman Miller. Clock is 100% original and in good working condition.
Dimensions: H 44 in. Dm 12 in.
Dealer Location: Brooklyn, NY
Materials & Techniques: Aluminum, Chrome, Lucite
Pendulum Clock by George Nelson for Howard Miller
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Aluminum, Chrome, Lucite
Pendulum clock by George Nelson for Howard Miller.
Dimensions: H 4 ft. 8.5 in. W 14 in. D 10 in.
Dealer Location: Culver City, CA
Materials & Techniques: Lucite, Wood
*ON SALE* George Nelson for Howard Miller Grandfat...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Lucite, Wood
A Mid-Century Grandfather clock, designed by George Nelson for Howard Miller, Model No. 622. A wooden frame with rounded corners borders the smoked Lucite panes, displaying the inner wo...
Rare George Nelson Floor Clock
Idealforms
Dimensions: H 30.25 in. Dm 7.5 in.
Dealer Location: BROOKLYN, NY
Materials & Techniques: Chrome
Rare George Nelson Floor Clock
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Chrome
Rare George Nelson floor clock for Howard Miller. Chrome ball face on a tulip base. A truly stunning clock seldom seen.
Dimensions: H 1.5 in. Dm 14.25 in.
Dealer Location: Brooklyn, NY
Materials & Techniques: Ceramic
George Nelson Meridian Wall Clock Rimini Blue Face...
Bitossi, Aldo Londi, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Ceramic
“Meridian” clock designed by George Nelson for the Howard Miller Clock Company. Face is made of “Rimini Blue” Italian ceramic designed by Aldo Londi for Bitossi, battery operated....
Dimensions: H 3 in. Dm 27.5 in.
Dealer Location: Brooklyn, NY
Materials & Techniques: Aluminum, Brass, Wood
George Nelson Rare Wall Clock, Model 2241 by Howar...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Aluminum, Brass, Wood
Howard Miller produced this rare George Nelson clock in 1957. The brass center is supported by aluminum rods and has lacquered wooden hour markers. This early form holds a mechanical ke...
Dimensions: H 3 in. Dm 14 in.
Dealer Location: Culver City, CA
Materials & Techniques: Birch
Birchwood Wall Clock by George Nelson for Howard M...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Birch
This modernist wall clock is an original design by George Nelson for Howard Miller. Roman numerals and lined notches mark the round light birch wood face of the clock. From the black pl...
Dimensions: H 3 in. Dm 9 in.
Dealer Location: Culver City, CA
Materials & Techniques: Plastic
Geometric Wall Clock by George Nelson for Howard M...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Plastic
A geometric wall clock by George Nelson for Howard Miller. The hands that keep the time on this atomic piece are a blue and red circle, a long white hand, and a yellow diamond. Encompas...
Dimensions: H 1.25 in. Dm 14 in.
Dealer Location: BROOKLYN, NY
Meridian Clock for Raymor Designed by George Nelso...
Bitossi, Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Striking Mid-Century Bitossi ceramic wall clock by Howard Miller and designed by George Nelson. This particular design is very rare. All original condition.
Dimensions: H 1 in. Dm 13 in.
Dealer Location: Newport Beach, CA
Materials & Techniques: Ceramic
Meridian Ceramic Clock by Raymor for Howard Miller...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Ceramic
Designed by George Nelson and crafted in Italy by the Raymor company, this beautiful clock was made for the Meridian Clock Division of Howard Miller, Zeeland, Michigan. Original tags on...
Dimensions: H 11.25 in. Dm 11.25 in.
Dealer Location: Culver City, CA
Materials & Techniques: Rattan
Woven Rattan "Basket Clock" by George Nelson for H...
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Rattan
Out of the 150+ designs created by George Nelson for Howard Miller, this clock is one of the most rare editions. Small black circles mark the number positions around the round, woven wi...
Dimensions: H 2.75 in. Dm 13 in.
Dealer Location: Miami, FL
Materials & Techniques: Glass, Rosewood
Two Mid-Century Modern Howard Miller George Nelson...
George Nelson
Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Glass, Rosewood
One round clock rosewood face with alum. Round circles for numbers and alum. Perimeter. Original electric clock mechanism. Measures: 13" dia. 2.75" deep. One square clock Italian gla...
Dimensions: H 1.25 in. Dm 14 in.
Dealer Location: BROOKLYN, NY
Meridian Clock for Raymor Designed by George Nelso...
Bitossi, Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Striking Bitossi ceramic wall clock by Howard Miller and designed by George Nelson. All original condition.
Dimensions: H 3 in. Dm 13 in.
Dealer Location: Chicago, IL
Materials & Techniques: Metal, Wood
Vintage George Nelson White Ball Clock
George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Metal, Wood
Vintage George Nelson white ball clock.
Dimensions: H 2.5 in. Dm 19 in.
Dealer Location: BROOKLYN, NY
Materials & Techniques: Metal, Wood
George Nelson Spike Clock by Howard Miller
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Metal, Wood
Striking George Nelson spike clock by Howard Miller. Model 2202 in painted wood and brass. Unusual black on black finish. Very good original condition.
Dimensions: H 4 in. Dm 14 in.
Dealer Location: New York, NY
Materials & Techniques: Steel, Wood
Modernist Wall Clock by George Nelson
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Steel, Wood
A modernist wall clock having a figured birch body with Roman numerals and a black center with graphically contrasting white and red hands.
Dimensions: H 2 in. Dm 12 in.
Dealer Location: New York, NY
George Nelson Prototype Domino Clock
George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Nelson office, designed by Irving Harper for Howard Miller. This is the only clock and was never produced. Purchased from Howard Miller Executive.  
George Nelson Wall Clock
DeAngelis
Dimensions: H 3 in. Dm 14 in.
Dealer Location: San Francisco, CA
Materials & Techniques: Metal, Wood
George Nelson Wall Clock
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Clocks
Metal, Wood
George Nelson wall clock for Howard Miller Clock Company of Zeeland, Michigan. Plug powered. Label intact.
George Nelson for Howard Miller Grandfather Clock
Motley
Dimensions: H 4 ft. 8.5 in. W 14 in. D 4.25 in.
Dealer Location: Los Angeles, CA
Materials & Techniques: Brass, Lucite, Oak
George Nelson for Howard Miller Grandfather Clock
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Brass, Lucite, Oak
This is a George Nelson floor clock for Howard Miller Clock Company, model number 622. Solid oak case concealing lucite front and cover for all brass works, weights and pendulum. Chimes...
"Swag-Leg" Grandfather Clock by George Nelson
MORENTZ
Dimensions: H 5 ft. 10.9 in. W 15.75 in. D 11.81 in.
Dealer Location: Waalwijk, NL
"Swag-Leg" Grandfather Clock by George Nelson
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Elegant "swag-leg" grandfather clock by George Nelson for Howard Miller. This model (#2256) is chain driven. The mechanism is made in Germany by Hermie. Please note the nice contras...
Dimensions: H 36.25 in. W 17 in. D 4.75 in.
Dealer Location: Ferndale, MI
Materials & Techniques: Acrylic, Chrome, Walnut
George Nelson Howard Miller Walnut Case Wall Clock...
George Nelson
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Acrylic, Chrome, Walnut
George Nelson Howard Miller walnut case wall clock . Key wind up keeps excellent time . Does not chime .
George Nelson Wall Clock
Pierson
Dimensions: H 3 in. Dm 14 in.
Dealer Location: San Mateo, CA
Materials & Techniques: Birch, Metal
George Nelson Wall Clock
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Birch, Metal
Wall clock designed by the George Nelson office for Howard Miller. This clock is electric and retains a partial original label on the back. The clock is made of birch and the markers ar...
Dimensions: H 3.5 in. Dm 15.5 in.
Dealer Location: Chicago, IL
Materials & Techniques: Metal, Wood
George Nelson clock with graphic face by Howard Mi...
George Nelson
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Clocks
Metal, Wood
Of the many designed by the Nelson office for Howard Miller this one is an example of a design solution that uses simple construction, but still manages great visual appeal. The wood fa...
Dimensions: H 6 1/8 W 4 1/4 D 3 in.
Dealer Location: Chicago, IL
Materials & Techniques: Lucite, Brass
Original George Nelson Tripod Clock
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1940s American Clocks
Lucite, Brass
This is an original George Nelson Tripod Clock for Howard Miller. This was Nelson's first desk clock and is signed "Howard Miller Clock Company,Zeeland Michigan" on the back.
Dimensions: D 2.5 in. Dm 14 in.
Dealer Location: New York, NY
Azure Ceramic 'Meridian' Clock for Raymor
Howard Miller, George Nelson
Vintage 1950s Italian Clocks
A ceramic clock with a Bitossi Rimini Blue style design of impressed geometric forms and glazed in azure and light green. Ceramic body made in Italy, designed by George Nelson, clock c...
George Nelson Eye Clock
Galere
Dimensions: H 13.5 in. W 30.25 in. D 2.5 in.
Dealer Location: West Palm Beach, FL
George Nelson Eye Clock
George Nelson
20th Century American Clocks
George Nelson "Eye" Clock model # 2238,Herman Miller Original finish
View other items in this style