Vladimir Kagan was born in Germany in 1927, son of a Russian cabinetmaker. He moved to the United States in 1938 and in the years that followed he mostly worked in painting and sculpture. He soon found himself drawn to architecture and design and he graduated from The School of Industrial Art in 1946. He went to Columbia University where he studied architecture. After college he went to work with his father in his woodworking shop where he gained hands-on knowledge and experience working with a material that would factor greatly into his future designs. Kagan opened his own store in 1947 and in 1950 he started collaborating with Hugo Dreyfus, a textile designer. His early works are signed “Kagan/Dreyfus”. Kagan became famous for furniture with curving lines in sculpted wood. These pieces were hand-crafted and time consuming to make. He also worked in aluminum, ceramic tiles, wrought iron, lucite and made upholstered pieces. Kagan’s pieces are simultaneously avante garde and sexy. They are meticulously crafted and visually arresting. Kagan has won numerous design awards throughout his career including a Lifetime Achievement Awards from the Brooklyn Museum, Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, and the American Society of Furniture Designers, an inductee into the Interior Design Hall of Fame. He died in 2016.