In the late 1950s, Los Angeles based designer La Gardo Tackett (1911-1992) and his family spent 16 months in Japan and, while there, met an importer from Boston and developed the "Forma" line of dinnerware for Schmid International. Inspired by his anthropological research into the cultural history of vessels used in dinnerware, Tackett designed this line of what he referred to as "autonomous" pieces, meaning that they could be used at the table or throughout the house as accessories. During the same period he also designed pieces that were later distributed by the Freeman Lederman Company. Tackett worked with European-trained ceramic engineers at the largest Ironstone factory in Japan, using machinery imported from Germany and England, to produce the exceptional quality of his stoneware pieces. The pieces possess Tackett's trademark minimal, sculptural Los Angeles design sensibility that was made popular by his work for Architectural Pottery.