As a kid, Jeff Weber was fascinated by the way things worked. "I was always tinkering—either building things or tearing them apart," he says. Watching his mechanical talents develop, his grandfather suggested that he consider becoming an industrial designer. Once he learned more, "I never really thought about doing anything else," recalls Weber.
Today he uses his considerable talents to improve the human condition by designing products that enhance people's lives—at home and at work. "There should always be a human benefit associated with whatever it is we're designing," he explains. "It's all about the experience, stimulating a person's senses in a positive or beneficial way."
While Weber's work includes a wide spectrum of products, he became interested in furniture design when he teamed up with Bill Stumpf, who worked with Herman Miller for 30 years. "Bill's design spirit will inspire all my future work," says Weber. One example is Stumpf's "uni-part" theory. "It says that all components of any given object must have a functional purpose as well as an aesthetic one," says Weber. "It's a fundamental principle we employ every day."
In the studio, that philosophy means the design of an object, a building, or a service "is the connective tissue between people and the world. The quality of that design really dictates the quality of the user's experience and thus defines our existence."
With an emphasis on results, an integral and important aspect in his design process is research. When designing Herman Miller's Embody chair, for example, Weber and the Herman Miller team spent nearly two years talking with experts in various fields of medicine, from specialists in upper-extremity conditions to optometrists and neurologists. It was all in an effort to gain a real understanding of what it takes "to support a body in space in a healthful way and enable motion at the same time," he says.
"The human body is a constant source of inspiration for me," he continues. "Workplace demands and responsibilities may change, but the human element remains relatively the same. My challenge is always, 'How can I produce something that will actually improve that condition?' Comfort and health are like love and peace: can we ever have enough?" he ponders.
Weber says the most satisfying part of his work is watching someone enjoying the final outcome of his efforts. "Seeing someone sitting in a chair and appreciating the logic and rationale behind it is very gratifying."
He says he's finding this stage of his career to be especially energizing. "I've always believed that good design is a blend of art and science," he says. "To use that combination in ways that positively impact how people live and work is really exciting to me."
Questions & Answers
Herman Miller ®
Caper Stacking Chair With Arms
E from MA– Verified Buyer– Top 100 Reviewer
I did receive and am very happy with this stacking chair. It is working out really well for me and is the size and quality that I was expecting.
Lynn H from Fort Wayne, IN– Verified Buyer
Were delighted with this purchase! Its a very comfortable, stylish, customizable chair thats easy on the environment. Super easy assembly.
Great guest chairs!
Bradley Wilson from Chicago, IL– Verified Buyer
These Herman Miller chairs are great. The options are endless and they make for the perfect guest chairs. They work in our management offices as well as our guest area. The were extremely easy to put together and are very durable.
Francisco Castellanos from Phoenix, AZ– Verified Buyer
Good quality at the right price. It was a opened-box item that looks brand new. So far no cons to report
Chris from Florence, MA– Verified Buyer
Another Herman Miller Classic in the making... well designed, well made, contemporary without the strained novelty and most importantly...very affordable. However, the Spring Green looks more like a Nuclear Winter. Looks great in virtual world of online and in swatches, not so much in real world.
Perfect size, nice design
Jojo from New York, NY
I live in a one bedroom nyc apartment, so as you can imagine, the amount of space that something takes up is always an issue. I was looking for a good quality desk chair that wasn't too bulky and had a nice design. This chair fit all my needs. It's also very lightweight, extremely comfortable, and rolls nicely. I definitely recommend.
Another Herman Miller Winner!
Studio Assistant from Madison, WI– Verified Buyer
This chair blends in perfect when you have other Herman Miller products within your office. Great Style - Ergonomically Fit!
Contemporary and Confortable
gwpriester from Placitas, NM
We purchased six of these chairs in 2001-2002 in yellow, blue and red. The red has faded to a dull brown and the blue is starting to oxidize. We purchased six more after being assured by Modern Furniture that this problem has been fixed.
Modern Furniture was extremely helpful and has provided timely and excellent support. Emails were answered in hours and every effort was made to make shopping for these chairs a positive experience.
comfortable stylish desk chair
longwalker from north east– Verified Buyer
I have not had this chair for a very long time. The space is small and the chair doesn't take up a lot of visual room. The chair is comfortable, moves easily (I got an upgrade on the wheels) and has not marked our wood floors. No complaints.
Comfortable design, but...
gwpriester from Placitas, New Mexico USA
We purchased 6 of these chairs about 9 years ago as dining room chairs. They are extremely confortable, and compact. You can sit in them for hours and not feel uncomfortable and they accomodate large persons comfortably.
We purchased two red, two blue, and two yellow.
The red plastic started to fade after a few years and now is a dull dried blood brown. The blue started to oxydize a few years ago.
I recently contacted Herman Miller who when they did get back to me, did not answer my question about whether or not the new chairs also fade. They told me to contact the company from whom we purchased the chairs.
So, in short, I would ask for some kind of assurance before I purchase these chairs again.
Herman Miller began in 1923 as a manufacturer of traditional residential furniture, became a leader in "modern" furniture in the 1930s and 1940s; developed lasting ties through the 1950s with legendary industrial designers who led the company in new directions; transformed the office furniture industry with the first panel system in the 1960s; invented and refined ergonomic work seating in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s; reinvented the geometry of systems furniture in 2000, and is today the second largest office furniture company with customers and locations around the world. Their history of employee participation and ownership and technological innovation has long roots and continues to grow. They have always worked hard to be serious about both people and business. They look at their primary goal as creating great places to work.
George Nelson laid out five tenets of Herman Miller's design philosophy 50 years ago:
While fashion and style have their place, the main criterion for a Herman Miller product has remained constant: Does it truly solve a problem that people care about in a way that improves upon other solutions, or pioneers a new and better answer altogether? The answer is Yes.