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The Work of Peter Jon Pearce

Peter Jon Pearce is a Product Systems Designer. His unique approach to design considers form as an agent of performance. This concept is informed by a lifelong passion for the relationship of the shape things to how things work. Pearce calls this high-performance design, which he considers a necessary strategy for the achievement of sustainability in the built environment. It is a strategy in which form, structure, process, and materials are fully integrated to create products of exceptional performance, long life, and enduring appearance.

Pearce’s interest in the shape of things led to a study of natural structure. This has provided the underpinnings of Pearce’s design strategy. Evidence shows that patterns of least energy determines form in nature, in which form can be considered a diagram of forces. It is this principle of form generation that underlies structure in nature as a strategy for design.

Peter Pearce is currently designing and developing a carbon-neutral prototype residence called the Hólos House (aka Pearce Ecohouse), which takes solar design, green architecture, and prefab building to new levels – Beyond Green, Beyond Prefab.


Holos House

Prior to the Hólos House project, Pearce developed an innovative building system technology. With this system, Pearce was responsible for the design and manufacture of over 80 state-of-the-art architectural projects. These projects included the Biosphere 2, in Arizona; Fremont Street, in Las Vegas; and the Winter Garden at Navy Pier in Chicago.

Biosphere II (Oracle, AZ – USA)
Freemont Street (Las Vegas, NV – USA)

Not only has Peter Pearce applied this high-performance design strategy to building system development but to furniture design as well. In 2002, Steelcase, Inc. began production on a new kind of general-purpose office chair of Pearce’s design, called Cachet, which embodies these high-performance design principles.

Cachet – Task
Cachet – Side

In 1958 Peter Jon Pearce was hired by Charles Eames upon graduation from the Institute of Design in Chicago. While at the Eames office Pearce contributed to the design a variety of seating projects. Perhaps the most well-known of these is the Eames Tandem Airport Seating system. Eames was an important confirming influence on Pearce’s philosophy of design. After leaving the Eames office 1961, he began his investigations into structure in nature as a basis for building system design.

Eames Tandem Airport Seating (LAX – Los Angeles, CA – USA)

In addition to architectural and furniture applications, Pearce has also applied his design approach to play-space structures, educational toys, and games. Pearce has also pursued avocations in photography, music, and automotive design.

Curved Space Diamond Structure
SuperStructures Building Toy

Pearce’s 65 year history working as a professional product systems designer is presented. His work in the field of architecture, building system development, furniture design, educational toys, playground structures, and morphological research is included.