But the first thing that Eames tells me (I call him Demetrios, but he corrects me with Eames) is that the house his grandfather built sprang from the most absolute need and the difficulties in finding building material after the war. And how Charles Eames devoted himself to design, rather than the construction of buildings, as a means of finding a professional outlet when he began his career against the background of the profound economic crisis in the wake of the Great Crash of 1929. But in the same way as a crisis can open up new possibilities, identifying the problem tends to be part of the solution. And I can’t help thinking about our current situation and finding parallels. And also thinking about the potential opportunities.
I want to ask Eames about his grandfather’s early days, about what influenced him and about who, in his opinion, would be his legitimate successors today in America (always a difficult question and one he avoids answering); I want to ask him about the working methods that the Eames couple followed and also about more prosaic aspects such as their everyday lives and any anecdotes that I might not know and which he could tell me about. I ask him how many people used to work in the studio (I can’t imagine how they all used to fit in) and he points out that here, where we are now, was his personal studio, and that the practice, the workshop where around 50 people ended up working, which was also the first plant where his chair prototypes were manufactured, was actually located on