First, we turn to the spiritual works of George Nakashima. Nakashima’s creations are a triumph of precision and attention to design. For example, The Conoid chair,  is supported on two legs alone, with long feet and angled stiles supporting a cantilevered plank seat, proving that Nakashima's skills knew no end.

During WWII George Nakashima and his family were interned at a relocation camp in Idaho.  There, Nakashima met Gentaro Hikogawa, a carpenter who worked with Nakashima to design and build furniture for their humble dwellings at the camp. Nakashima learnt the use of traditional Japanese hand tools and construction techniques that did not involve screws or nails for support. Nakashima’s furniture is defined by the use of exposed dovetails and butterfly joints, which showcases the structural integrity of his pieces. It is evident his design is inspired by American shaker design, an aesthetic adored for its simplicity.

It is evident from the way Nakashima expectedly worked with wood, that he had a deep connection to the woods. His works are almost living, Nakashima’s philosophy was influenced by Sri Aurobindo, an Indian philosopher and poet with whom he studied while in Pondicherry, India overseeing the design and construction of the  Golconde Dormitory for the Sri Aurobindo Ashram.  Nakashima’s furniture respects the tree it has been created from, creating something of lasting which preserves the beauty of the tree in the forest.

Moving away from the simplistic, to the equally beautiful but intricate designs of Piero Fornasetti. Fornasetti's classical architecture influence and his fanciful graphics awed audience of the 1950's, and continue to do so today.

Italian design flourished during the Post-war period and the lines between art, craft and design were blurred. Piero's objects are surreal, and appear to have a personality of their own. Among Fornasetti’s most successful and desirable designs are his collaborations with Gio Ponti, another significant designer and architect of the 20th century.

On sale at Freeman's is the Ponti and Fornasetti “Architecture” bureau and desk dating to 1951. The prototype for the bureau had splayed and tapered wood legs and a concave pediment.  It was exhibited at the IX Milan Triennale.  One of two existing examples is in the permanent collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum  in London.  Ultimately, Fornasetti altered the pediment and base for production beginning in 1953.

A step away from Fornasetti's elaborate monochrome designs is the colorful geometric works of Frank Stella. Frank Stella was first introduced to the print medium in 1967 by master printer Ken Tyler. Tyler had established his own atelier, Gemini G.E.L. two years prior and was searching for prominent artists to join his workshop. Stella had already made a name for himself in the art world for his minimalist, geometric paintings, significant for their departure from the dominant Abstract Expressionist style of the time. At first, Stella was not so turned on by print, but he was soon persuaded when Tyler gave him a lithographic tusche disguised as a marker with which he could draw directly on the lithographic stone.

Stella recalled: ''I resisted his overtures as hard as I could. Nevertheless, Ken prevailed and a few weeks later I was chained to a table covered with aluminum plates.”

Stella executed his prints in series- each one consisting of a variety of solutions to a specific formal problem. The Newfoundland Series  (1971) was based on a series of paintings of the same name created a few years earlier. Stella modified the prints, creating a “pyschologically distancing” effect that is quite different from the immediacy of the paintings on which they were based. For instance, he framed the squared and double-squared interlacing protractors with white margins and screenprinted an outline around his segmented shapes, thus intensifying the powerful tension between each color, highlighting the movement of each shape and fortifying the geometric form. As Stella was always concerned with the strength of the image, he added flourescent inks and gloss-varnish in order to enhance the color and vary the texture, therefore increasing the visual impact of the surface as a whole.

The sale will include Frank Stella's River of Ponds II from his Newfoundland Series.

The Art + Design sale will take place on March 20. Check out the full catalog on Barnebys here.