Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Still Sexy at 60 Furniture Maker Marks Anniversary and Long Collaboration with Modernist Designer

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Still Sexy at 60 Furniture Maker Marks Anniversary and Long Collaboration with Modernist Designer

Article excerpt

HIGH POINT, N.C. --

Modern is still contemporary after 60 years at Thayer Coggin, the family owned furniture company based in North Carolina. Among the first manufacturers of modern furniture in the U.S., the company is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year.

It's also commemorating the collaboration of designer Milo Baughman and Thayer Coggin. The duo worked together for 50 years until 2003, the year both men died. They had a solid friendship and together pioneered modern residential design in this country. As a way to honor that, the company launched the Milo Baughman Design Classics Road Show in Dallas at the beginning of the year. It stops Wednesday at Perlora on Carson Street, South Side. The national tour showcases 23 of Baughman's (pronounced BOFFman) iconic pieces exclusively created for Thayer Coggin.

"It was always a handshake agreement," says Royale Coggin Wiggin, Coggin's daughter and president of the company.

Among the pieces coming to Perlora are the Drum table (1970) in stainless steel or brushed bronze, the Circle sofa and T-Back lounge chair, both from 1968, and the 1957 Stem table with round walnut top and stainless-steel base.

A U.S. Army medic in World War II, Coggin founded Thayer Coggin in 1953 and saw a shared vision in Baughman, a young designer from California. That year, Baughman designed the Scoop chair, with simple, elegant lines. It was the first piece the team produced. Baughman was 80 years old when he designed his last piece for Thayer Coggin.

"Milo created his final collection, Studio MB, while visiting High Point for Thayer's memorial service," remembers Ms. Wiggin.

It was for the company's 50th anniversary in 2003. Three months later the designer died. Both chairs will be in the road show.

"My father and Milo had a terrific relationship. He greatly appreciated Milo's designs, and Milo valued Thayer's talents to engineer and build them. …

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