Any Modern Classic Fan would know the range of funky wall clocks designed by George Nelson for Vitra. Although the clocks were designed over a span of 13 years, between 1948 to 1961, you will find it difficult to tell which one was designed first. Well, it could either mean that the designs are so ahead of its time that it could stand the test of time, or the designs had never progress even after a decade. Looking at the clocks now, it is probably a mixed of the two. George Nelson’s wall clocks have a consistent design language (except for the Eye Clock), with all clocks having a “Round Radiant” Design style. Basically, the clocks have a round profile defined by different sculptural design “spikes” and colours to differentiate them. Some of the clocks even have identical Hour and Minute Hands! This is the consistency in the great architect’s design style. The “Ahead of its Time” factor lies with its artsy designs. These designs are both classic as well as contemporary due to the “Retro” movements of recent years. Such movements aims to bring back the old schools back into the limelight. If it succeeds, we all know the old style will become the new “In” again. If you ask me whether George Nelson’s designs are timeless? I would say, yes. Why, you may ask. In my opinion, arts are timeless and the wall clock designs embodies design arts very well. Its use of colours and materials, as well as sculptural outlines was what was infused into the clocks. It is these design languages that stopped its aging as effectively as how the clocks keep track of time.
Eye Clock – 1957
My favourite of the lot? The Eye Clock. The reason is very simple. If you noticed, the Eye Clock, designed in 1957 is actually the only non-circular form wall clock from George Nelson in this range. The Eye Clock is also versatile in it’s placement. You can either put it upright or tilt it 90 degrees and get a whole new feeling to it. These clocks are worthy of being the Art of Time. I’m most certain to have at least one hanging on the walls of my future home.