* 1917 New York
† 2003 New York
Ward Bennet was a great American interior designer; although entirely self-taught, he even was a visiting professor at such prestigious institutions as Yale (1962/63) and an assistant professor at the Pratt Institute in New York from 1969 until 1971. Ward Bennett left school at thirteen to work drawing fashions in New York. He was so talented that he was sent to Paris to capture the newest haute couture creations. Ward Bennett traveled through Europe for several years, enrolling at the Porto Romano art school in Florence to study drawing. On his return to Paris, Ward Bennett attended the Académie de la Grande Chaumière until 1938 and was a pupil of the sculptor Constantin Brancusi's. Ward Bennett subsequently lived in Los Angeles and San Francisco. Enormously prolific and versatile, Ward Bennett worked as a shop window decorator, milliner, and interior designer yet he gradually made his reputation as an interior decorator and designer. For Skidmore, Owings & Merrill Ward Bennett worked as a design consultant. Ward Bennett opened a practice in New York eröffnet Ward Bennett and worked for the American paper company Crown Zellerbach. Ward Bennett designed the entire interior of the Chase Manhattan Bank in New York. He had a large private clientele, for whom he designed the interiors of their homes, including the Rockefellers and the Agnelli family in Rome. From the 1960s Ward Bennett designed a great deal of furniture for Brickel Associates as well as glass objects, tableware, cutlery, and jewelry for Tiffany & Co. In 1987 Ward Bennett began to collaborate with Geiger International, for whom he designed office furniture. Ward Bennett's designs link traditional elements with modern form and he is regarded as a master of Minimalism with a penchant for high-tech.