Textile, 2002-14-3, 1947
Campagna
Campagna, likely named after the designer Angelo Testa’s friend, Paul Campagna, epitomizes Testa’s design vocabulary. Designed in 1947 for Knoll Associates, Campagna utilizes Testa’s preferred linear and geometric forms, commonly associated with his Bauhaus training. The hard edges of the concentric rectangles in this textile, however, have been softened by their appearance of being almost...
Two hatted women, smiling on a sunny patio
Meet the Hewitts: Part Ten
Meet the Hewitts: Part 9 covered the life of the Hewitt Sisters in their mature years — their travels and “eccentricities.” We conclude these blog snippets with a look at why Sarah and Eleanor called their Museum “modern” and a brief history of the Museum’s move from Cooper Union to its present home in the...
Russian Constructivist-style costume design of grey-bearded old man in long blue robe and maroon coat and hat with black (fur?) trim. One up-turned hand is raised across figure's chest.
Costume on the Cutting Edge
This boyar may be old and wizened, but the costume he sports is cutting-edge. His cloak and cap seem to be cut from geometric patterns, in a modern take on medieval fashion. Boyars were high-ranking aristocrats who advised the princes of medieval Russia, but this one wouldn’t look out of place in a cubist or...
Cut and entwinned ribbon silver brooch, with basse-taille enamel.
A Pretty Thought in a Variety of Shapes
In summer, when weddings are frequent, the thought of objects given in affection or love, makes a visit to the jewelry collection seem appropriate. This heart-form brooch is one of a group of jewelry by Charles Horner (English, 1821-1896) given to the Museum in December. Horner (English, 1821-1896) was an actual silversmith, watchmaker and enamellist...
2003-2-1
Fields of Floral Beauty
Flower Bed serves as a parable about good and evil involving furry black and white animate forms and chronicles their struggle against adversity. One of Hancock’s characters, Homerbuctus, has an eye for beauty but knows no moderation. His insatiable appetite leads him to take the flowers as his “mistresses”. Flower Bed wallpaper expresses this abundance...
Fiber and air
Fiber and Air: A Net by Joanne Segal Brandford
“My ordinary materials are fiber and air,” explained textile artist and scholar Joanne Segal Brandford in a university lecture in 1993, and it’s true. Whether made of coarse bands of rattan or fine strands of nylon, her nets, fabrics, and baskets seem to rest lightly in space. In its most basic form, a net is...
Poster depicts an oculus of digital blocks of color, growing more concentrated as the blocks get smaller and closer to the center. Above: el atomo para la paz; below: GENERAL DYNAMICS; center right: solar dynamics.
Looking Ahead in the Atomic Age
The year is 1955, and Cold War tensions have begun to escalate. General Dynamics is a newly formed parent company overseeing eleven manufacturers, producing cutting edge technology for the defense of the United States. The company is capitalizing on the American policy of nuclear deterrence, but John Jay Hopkins, General Dynamics’ president, wants a graphic...
woman holds camera
Meet the Staff: Michelle Cheng
Can you explain the type of work you do with the Cooper Hewitt? I manage the professional development programs for K-12 educators here at Cooper Hewitt. In particular, I lead the Smithsonian Design Institute (SDI), an innovative week-long program in the summer for teachers from across the country to help them bring design into their...
red, black and gold old-fashioned car
Meet the Hewitts: Part Nine
Meet the Hewitts: Part 8 told about good times at Ringwood Manor and the Hewitt home in Bar Harbor, Maine. This snippet discusses the Hewitt Sisters in their mature years. Travels and Eccentricities, 1910-1930 “It seems in 1905 that the Hewitts went to Europe and Sally and Nelly thought they would go modern, and purchase...
lively colorful painting of horse drawn carriage
Meet the Hewitts: Part Eight
Meet the Hewitts: Part Seven described gifts to the Cooper Union Museum by the Hewitt sisters and their friends, establishing a world-class museum collection. With summer now upon us, let’s escape to the country as the Hewitts would have! Sue Shutte, Historian at Ringwood Manor Margery Masinter, Trustee, Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum A Charming Country...