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Swid Powell Furniture

The New York City–based tableware company Swid Powell produced some of the most distinctive china and silver of the 1980s in collaboration with international architects and designers. It enjoyed renewed attention in 2007, when the Yale University Art Gallery mounted the exhibition “The Architect’s Table: Swid Powell and Postmodern Design,” celebrating the donation to its collection of the company’s papers.

Swid Powell was established in 1982 by Nan Swid and Addie Powell, who met while working at the modernist furniture company Knoll. Their idea was to translate the aesthetics of postmodern design from the skyscraper to the dining table, and they brought into their preliminary discussions nine prominent architects. Among these were Philip Johnson, Stanley Tigerman and Richard Meier, all of whom expressed enthusiasm about making their designs accessible beyond the small group with the funds to commission buildings from them.

The first Swid Powell collection was launched in 1984, accompanied by a bold, graphic print campaign in keeping with the era’s advertising trends. The company’s best-known collaboration was with Robert Venturi’s Philadelphia-based firm, Venturi, Scott Brown and Associates, whose patterns — particularly the floral design Grandmother inspired by a tablecloth Venturi saw at the home of a colleague's grandmother — adorned Swid Powell porcelain as well as furniture and clothing.

The firm also partnered with architect Richard Meier, whose geometric designs were inspired in part by those of Josef Hoffmann and Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Swid Powell also worked with Arata Isosaki, Ettore Sottsass, Zaha Hadid and George Sowden, creating products that incorporated the bright, saturated colors and popular and historical references, like Classical columns, that animated postmodern design in the 1980s. The Chicago Blue china pattern designed for Swid Powell by the firm Gwathmey Siegel references the distinctive patterns of Frank Lloyd Wright’s leaded glass windows. As you will see in the examples below, Swid Powell continued to produce fine, fashionable homewares throughout the decade and beyond.

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Creator: Swid Powell
1987 Big Dripper Ceramic Coffee Set Michael Graves for Swid Powell
By Michael Graves (b.1934), Swid Powell
Located in Chula Vista, CA
1987 Postmodern Big Dripper Coffee Set by Michael Graves for Swid Powell High gloss white glaze large pot, filter holder, and lid with gold decoration and brick red base. Large Coffe...
Category

1980s Japanese Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Ceramic

Dripper Ceramic Creamer and Sugar Pot by Michael Graves for Swid Powell
By Michael Graves (b.1934), Swid Powell
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Perhaps Michael Graves' (1934-2015) most well-known design for Swid Powell, the Dripper series (1986) produced two sizes of a coffee pot born from Graves' preference for drip coffee ...
Category

Late 20th Century Unknown Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Ceramic

Swid Powell - Robert Mapplethorpe Porcelain Plates, Orchid - Flower - Calla Lily
By Robert Mapplethorpe, Swid Powell
Located in GRONINGEN, NL
Black and white porcelain collectors plates by Swid Powell and Robert Mapplethorpe. The set contains the plates ''Orchid'' - 1987 , "Flower" 1986 and ''Calla Lily'' - 1984. All have ...
Category

1980s Japanese Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Porcelain

Set of 21 Gwathmey Siegel Kaufman's 'Tuxedo' for Swid Powell Various Porcelain
By Gwathmey Siegel & Assoc, Swid Powell
Located in Southampton, NY
Set of 21 Gwathmey Siegel Kaufman's design 'Tuxedo' for Swid Powell - Various Porcelain pieces 3 Salad plates 7.75" diameter 3 Dinn...
Category

20th Century American Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Porcelain

Richard Meier Candleholders for Swid Powell
By Richard Meier, Swid Powell
Located in Chicago, IL
Richard Meier Candleholders for Swid Powell, Silver-plated brass,Both stamped RM MADE IN ITALY SILVER PLATED with copyright
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Elsa Rady for Swid Powell Silver Plate Post Modern Form Bowl or Vessel Argentina
By Elsa Rady, Swid Powell
Located in Atlanta, GA
A beautiful and striking post modern style silver plate bowl by Elsa Rady for Swid Powell circa 1990's. The strong geometric lines of the lip are softened by the gentle curve of the ...
Category

Late 20th Century Argentine Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Metal, Silver Plate

Robert. Lee Morris for Swid Powell Set of 8 “CAMELOT” White & Gold Bowls
By Robert Lee Morris, Swid Powell
Located in Palm Springs, CA
This set of dinnerware bowls were designed by the legendary jewelry and fine art designer, Robert Lee Morris for Swid Powell. The pattern name is called Camelot and is a chic, modern...
Category

1980s American Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Ceramic

Swid Powell for Calvin Klein Silver Plate and Crystal Caviar Bowl Dish Chiller
By Calvin Klein, Swid Powell
Located in Atlanta, GA
This stylish modernist caviar set was designed in the 1980s by Swid Powell and distributed by Calvin Klein Home Collection. The serving set includes ...
Category

1980s American Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Crystal, Metal, Silver Plate

Robert Lee Morris Set of 7 White & Gold “CAMELOT” Lunch Plates for Swid Powell
By Robert Lee Morris, Swid Powell
Located in Palm Springs, CA
This set of dinnerware lunch plates were designed by the legendary jewelry and fine art designer, Robert Lee Morris for Swid Powell. The pattern name is called Camelot and is a chic,...
Category

1980s American Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Ceramic

Haussmann Swid Powell "Mickey Mouse" Silver Plated Pepper Mill Grinder C. 1987
By Robert and Trix Haussmann, Swid Powell
Located in Atlanta, GA
Designer: Robert and Trix Haussmann (1931 – present and 1933 -present) for Swid Powell (established 1982). A whimsical but important modern design, often described as the “Disney” ...
Category

Late 20th Century Italian Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Wonderful Modern Pair Swid Powell Water Pitcher TsAO & McKown Silver Plate Italy
By Swid Powell
Located in Roslyn, NY
A Wonderful Pair Of Swid Powell / Calvin TsAO and Zack McKown Silver Plated Water Pitchers With A Sleek Conical Form With Flat Curving Handle And Ice Guard, This Beautiful Modern Pit...
Category

20th Century Italian Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

"King Richard" Candlestick by Richard Meier for Swid Powell
By Swid Powell, Cleto Munari, Richard Meier
Located in Skokie, IL
"King Richard" Candlestick by Richard Meier for Swid Powell A single "King Richard" silver-plated candlestick designed by Richard Meier for Swid Powell. Meier, b. 1934, is a noted 2...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate, Brass

"Courtney" Bud Vase by Gwathmey and Siegel for Swid Powell
By Cleto Munari, Swid Powell, Gwathmey Siegel & Assoc
Located in Skokie, IL
"Courtney" Bud Vase by Gwathmey and Siegel for Swid Powell A rare and iconic "Courtney" silver-plated bud vase designed by Charles Gwathmey and Robert Siegel for Swid Powell. Gwathm...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate, Brass

Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell “Renaissance” Cup & Saucer, Set of 4
By Ettore Sottsass, Swid Powell
Located in Jensen Beach, FL
Exceptionally rare set of cups & saucers by the inimitable Ettore Sottsass, designed for Swid Powell. This set is held in the private collections of prominent museums, such as The Me...
Category

1980s Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Porcelain

"Metropolitan" Candlestick by Robert A. M. Stern for Swid Powell
By Robert A.M. Stern, Cleto Munari, Swid Powell
Located in Skokie, IL
"Metropolitan" Candlestick by Robert A. M. Stern for Swid Powell A single iconic "Metropolitan" silver-plated candlestick designed by Robert A. M. Stern for Swid Powell. Stern, b. 1...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate, Brass

"Moonlight" Candlestick by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell
By Cleto Munari, Ettore Sottsass, Swid Powell
Located in Skokie, IL
"Moonlight" Candlestick by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell A single "Moonlight" silver -plated and brass candlestick designed by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell. Sottsass, 1917-2007...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate, Brass

Richard Meier for Swid Powell Post-Modern Period Skyscraper Bowl
By Richard Meier, Swid Powell
Located in Toledo, OH
Richard Meier for Swid Powell Post-Modern Period Skyscraper Bowl. circa 1990's. A designer Post-Modern Period sterling bowl by iconic American artist and architect Richard Meier for ...
Category

20th Century Italian Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Sterling Silver

Swid Powell Toscana Tableware Designed by Steven Harris & Lucien Ress-Roberts
By Swid Powell
Located in Philadelphia, PA
Great set of post modern colorful tableware: Designer: Steven Harris, American, born 1950 Designer: Lucien Rees Roberts, English, born 1952 Retaile...
Category

Late 20th Century European Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Porcelain

Little Dripper Ceramic Coffee Pot by Michael Graves for Swid Powell
By Michael Graves (b.1934), Swid Powell
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Perhaps Michael Graves' (1934-2015) most well-known design for Swid Powell, The Little Dripper (1986) is a 10 cup coffee pot born from Graves' preference for drip coffee and a lack o...
Category

Late 20th Century Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Ceramic

Robert Venturi Swid Powell Postmodern Serving Spoons Neoclassical Column, Set
By Reed & Barton, Swid Powell, Robert Venturi
Located in New York, NY
A beautiful, chic, substantial, and iconic set of designer Postmodern sterling silver-plate serving, salad or platter spoons with Neoclassical pillar column handle design, designed by architect Robert Venturi for Swid Powell, circa 1990s. Each measure: 14.25" long. Pieces were manufactured by Reed & Barton for Swid Powell. All piece's bare designer and makers' mark's on back of spoon(s) as shown in close-up images #9 and 10. A great set for summer, holiday, home entertaining...
Category

Late 20th Century American Neoclassical Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Big Dripper Ceramic Coffee Pot by Michael Graves for Swid Powell
By Michael Graves (b.1934), Swid Powell
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Perhaps Michael Graves' (1934-2015) most well-known design for Swid Powell, The Big Dripper (1986) is a 14 cup coffee pot born from Graves' preference for drip coffee and a lack of a...
Category

Late 20th Century Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Ceramic

Group of Three Post-Modern Swid Powell / David Palterer Silverplate Candlesticks
By Swid Powell
Located in Hudson, NY
Group of three Post-Modern Swid Powell marked silverplated brass candlesticks of substantial weight, designed by architect David Palterer, 1988.  Marked to underside of base: Palterer / Swid Powell / made in Italy / silverplated. Founded in 1982 by Nan Swid...
Category

20th Century Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Richard Meier for Swid Powell Stainless Steel Bowl/Centerpiece
By Swid Powell, Richard Meier
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Beautiful post modern design by the well known architect Richard Meier. Measure: 10 inches.
Category

Late 20th Century Italian Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Stainless Steel

Swid Powell Postmodern Skyscraper Bowl Silver-Plate, 1990s
By Richard Meier, Swid Powell
Located in New York, NY
A designer Postmodern period sterling silver-plate bowl by American artist and architect Richard Meier for Swid Powell Co., made in Italy, 1992. Piece is formally known as the "Skyscraper" bowl. Marked "Swid Powell", "RM", "Made in Italy", "Silver Pate", on bottom as shown in images #12 and 13 (hard to read.) Great as a standalone piece or as a vide-poche catchall for a table, desk, vanity, etc. Dimensions: 2.13" H x 5.94" Diameter. About Swid Powell: Well known for its promotion of fashionable ceramics, silverware, and glass by leading international, generally Postmodernist, architect-designers the New York-based Swid Powell company was founded by Nan Swid...
Category

1990s Italian Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Pr. Postmodern Silverplate Candlesticks by Richard Meier for Swid Powell, 1980's
By Richard Meier, Swid Powell
Located in New York, NY
Incredible pair of post modern silver plate candlesticks, by Richard Meier for Swid Powell. Very hard to find, especially in pairs, this impre...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Ettore Sottsass Candelstick / Candle Holder, Silver Plate for Swid Powell
By Swid Powell, Ettore Sottsass
Located in Los Angeles, CA
This is one icon of Post Modern design by the well known architect Ettore Sottsass.
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Swid Powell Serving Spoon Set by Michael Graves for Barton & Reed
By Reed & Barton, Michael Graves (b.1934), Swid Powell
Located in Southampton, NY
Swid Powell serving spoon seat by Michael Graves for Barton & Reed A Postmodern set of sterling silver plate salad serving spoons by Architect and Designer Michael Graves for Swid P...
Category

Late 20th Century American Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Grandmother Tableware Set Designed by Robert Venturi with Denise Scott Brown
By Swid Powell, Robert Venturi
Located in Kansas City, MO
Grandmother tableware set by Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown for Swid Powell, 1984. Set of four plates, four saucers and 20 cups. Dinner pla...
Category

1980s American Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Porcelain

Michael Graves for Swid Powell Postmodern Serving Spoon Set Silver Plate, 1990s
By Reed & Barton, Swid Powell, Michael Graves (b.1934)
Located in New York, NY
A Postmodern set of sterling silver plate salad serving spoons by Architect and Designer Michael Graves for Swid Powell Co., 1990. Each spoon bears the following on back as shown in ...
Category

1990s American Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate

Richard Meier for Swid Powell Silver Plated Peppermill
By Richard Meier, Swid Powell
Located in Hanover, MA
Hefty and well constructed pepper mill designed by uber architect Richard Meier for Swid Powell and produced in Italy, circa 1985. Ref...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate, Brass

Cup & Saucer Designed by Michael Graves for Swid Powell Cityline Corinth
By Swid Powell, Michael Graves (b.1934)
Located in San Diego, CA
Beautiful set of single coffee cup and saucer designed by Michael Graves for Swid Powell, very rare set designed in 1987 in porcelain finish. The saucer is 6" in diameter.
Category

20th Century American Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Porcelain

Pair of Ettore Sottsass Silver Candlesticks for Swid Powell and Reed and Barton
By Reed & Barton, Ettore Sottsass, Swid Powell
Located in Kansas City, MO
Striking pair of silver plated candlesticks designed by Ettore Sottsass and made by Swid Powell in collaboration with Reed and Barton, 1980s.  
Category

1980s American Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver

Swid Powell Dinner Set "Chicago Blues" Custom
By Swid Powell, Gwathmey Siegel & Assoc
Located in Chicago, IL
Gwathmey & Siegel inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright designed this pattern. Custom blue five-piece dinner set in original boxes. Dinner plate, soup bowl, salad plate, cup and saucer. 6 s...
Category

20th Century Japanese Mid-Century Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Ceramic

Pair of Silver Plate & Brass Candlesticks by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell
By Swid Powell, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Palm Desert, CA
A thoroughly modern pair of candlesticks, designed by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell, in the signature asymmetrical Memphis style. Sta...
Category

Late 20th Century Italian Memphis Group Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate, Brass

Steven Holl Rare Set of Bronze Candlesticks, 1986 Signed
By Swid Powell, Steven Holl
Located in New York, NY
Rare set of 3 architectural bronze candlesticks by Steven Holl for Swid Powell, American 1986. Signed “S. Holl / Swid Powell” on bottoms. Large W 5 inc...
Category

1980s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Bronze

Swid Powell Italian Silver Plated Chrome Picture Frame by Richard Meier
By Swid Powell, Richard Meier
Located in Los Angeles, CA
A stunning example of Richard Meiers work with Swid Powell. The sliver plated picture frame is a modern piece with a sphere and cylinder which house two pieces of glass floating. ...
Category

20th Century Italian Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate, Chrome

Big Dripper Ceramic Coffee Set by Michael Graves for Swid Powell
By Michael Graves (b.1934), Swid Powell
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Perhaps Michael Graves' (1934-2015) most well-known design for Swid Powell, The Big Dripper (1986) is a 14 cup coffee pot born from Graves' preference for drip coffee and a lack of available drip coffee makers that met his aesthetic standards. This set includes the coffee pot, filter holder, sugar pot, and creamer in a high gloss white glaze with gold decoration and a brick red base. Examples of this stunning post modernism...
Category

Late 20th Century Post-Modern Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Ceramic

"Silvershade" Candlestick by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell
By Cleto Munari, Ettore Sottsass, Swid Powell
Located in Skokie, IL
"Silvershade" Candlestick by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell A single "Silvershade" silver-plated candlestick designed by Ettore Sottsass for Swid Powell. Sottsass, 1917-2007, was a...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Swid Powell Furniture

Materials

Silver Plate, Brass

Swid Powell furniture for sale on 1stDibs.

Swid Powell furniture are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive items are frequently made of metal and are designed with extraordinary care. There are many options to choose from in our collection of Swid Powell furniture, although silver editions of this piece are particularly popular. Many of the original furniture by Swid Powell were created in the modern style in europe during the 20th century. If you’re looking for additional options, many customers also consider furniture by Richard Meier, Alessi, and Marco Zanini. Prices for Swid Powell furniture can differ depending upon size, time period and other attributes — on 1stDibs, these items begin at $175 and can go as high as $8,950, while a piece like these, on average, fetch $1,200.

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