(1879 - 1976)
Born into an aristocratic family from County Wexford, Ireland, Eileen Gray entered the Slade School of Art in London in 1898 and moved to Paris in 1902 where she spent the rest of her life, interrupted only by the two world wars. Although Gray did not exhibit consistently at the Salons, she ran her own establishment, the Jean Desert Gallery, from 1922 until 1930. Gray's furniture has been characterized as "luxurious and theatrical" and the gallery never achieved commercial success, although it was supported by sales of her popular carpets. She became a household name after Yves Saint Laurent paid $35,000 for one of her lacquer screens at a Paris auction in the early 60's.