Paul McCobb (1917 – 1969), started his career as a window dresser, before he decided to open his own desgin-studio in New York. The MOMA gave him five design awards within 1950 and 1955, although McCobb was an absolute autodidact without any training in design or architecture. Nevertheless he was one of the commercial most successful designers of his era.
McCobb had a wide range of products, like cloth, wallpaper, lighting, dinnerware, radios and of course furniture. His most popular "low cost" line, the "Planner group", which was produced by Winchedon from 1950 to 1964, was not shown in this book. But with this line, McCobb had established himself in many american households. This series was one of the bestselling furniture-series of all times. It was so popular that it also initialized a lot of so called "Knock-Offs" from other companies, which are mixed up today as McCobb originals.
An absolute McCobb-enthusiast and -expert, Gerard O'Brian and owner of the Reform-Gallery on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. O'Brian bought his first McCobb-piece in the middle of the nineties, it was a Planner Group desk. He started to collect McCobb-lamps, produced by the company Arbuck.
His collection exists of 300 pieces meanhwile and might be the biggest private collection of McCobb-items. After two presentations on the L.A. Vintage show O'Brian is now writing a book about McCobb, together with the collector and historian Jonathan Goldstein from New York.
McCobb had been very active as a "modern designer" and achieved international importance with his Irwin collection from 1952. Thanks to american furniture dealers like J.F. Chen, Converso, Dual, Lost City Arts, Modern Living Supplies and Wyeth, McCobb is again very popular today and after wrong classifications of his work and ridiculous low prices now he recieves the respect he deserves.
ORIGINAL IN BERLIN offers the following design pieces of Paul McCobb: