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691 Coffee Table


The model 691 coffee table was introduced in 1958 as part of the Indoor-Outdoor Group, rechristened the following year as the Eames Aluminum Group. Originally intended to be equally suitable for indoor and outdoor use, the collection ultimately found favor in offices and other public spaces and is best known for its chair designs, which combine cast aluminum members with fabric seats in a manner that required significant material and technical innovation. The tables did not utilize this construction, but they did feature the chairs’ same sturdy four-pronged pedestal bases. These became known as the Eames Contract Base, and the tables eventually came to be regarded as an independent collection known as the Eames Contract Base Tables—all of which have circular or square tops. This example incorporates a rare Onyx top, translucent white with brown veins. The coffee table was also offered in white glass, slate, or Botticino marble. These materials appealed to the Eameses for their durability and visual appeal, aligning with the notion of “truth to materials” that meant that materials should be readily identifiable and worked in ways that aligned with their nature.

  • Manufacturer: Herman Miller, Inc.
  • Medium:Onyx, steel, aluminum, rubber, nylon
  • Dimensions:16 x 36 in. (40.6 x 91.4 cm)
  • Design Date:1958
  • Item:2021.52.1