Husband and wife team Charles (1907-1978) and Ray (1912-1988) Eames played a major role in the world of modern architecture and furniture, as well as working in industrial and graphic design, fine art, and film. Charles completed two years of study at Washington University in St. Louis. With his design and life partner Ray, he designed prize-winning furniture that expanded upon the wood molding techniques of Alvar Aalto. Ray-Bernice Alexandra Kaiser Eames began as an abstract expressionist painter, having graduated from Bennett Women's College in Millbrook, NY and later studying under Hans Hoffman while living in New York City. She co-founded the American Abstract Artists and has a painting in the Whitney museum's permanent collection.