Object of the Day

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“Kew” Me In to Another Floral Wallpaper
As I have mentioned previously floral designs make up the largest grouping of wallpapers in the Cooper Hewitt collection. Many of the very earliest wallpapers in the collection are floral based and they never seem to go out of style. I was attracted to this design for its casual, relaxed nature, and its rather abstract...
CHSDM-1920-10-1MattFlynn
Swiss Style
During the nineteenth century, many European nations endeavored to define their cultural identities and to establish national histories. This romantic nationalism was characterized by a nostalgia that fueled an interest in historic folk customs. Peasants were commonly viewed as synonymous with nationhood and peasant costumes were the subject of interest and national pride. This fan,...
chermayeff
Come, All Ye Weary
Liberty and immigration: here are values so intimately tied with the history of the United States and New York in particular, that they seem to permeate one another. The year 1974 was a strenuous one for the US. The recent end of the Vietnam War left open wounds still seething in the minds of millions,...
1997-11-3
On a High Note
I recently enjoyed a visit to American craftsman Wharton Esherick’s former studio and home, now operating as a museum, on the top of Valley Forge Mountain in Malvern, Pennsylvania.  Exteriors and interiors on the site are amusingly playful yet impressively clever and upon closer examination, carefully calculated. There is barely a straight line in the whole design. Instead...
1981-28 Matt Flynn 009
A Sampler by Martha Butler
Martha Butler’s 1729 sampler belongs to the earliest known group of Boston samplers, worked between 1724 and 1744. The style of the samplers evolved over time, but the majority of them feature Adam and Eve or the Garden of Eden, both important symbols of Puritan theology. Martha’s sampler is closely related to what is believed...
rosborg
From Neoclassical to Art Moderne
In 1977, in honor of the bicentennial celebrations of a year previous, Cooper Hewitt mounted an exhibition entitled 200 Years of American Architectural Drawing (see more on the exhibition in a special feature on the Architectural League’s website). Curated by David Gebhard and Deborah Nevins, the show and its accompanying publication featured a range of...
1986-99-7
The People’s Receiver
In the 1930s, the Nazi party relied heavily on propaganda in order to spread its political and social views across Germany under the Third Reich. While this spread of ideas was most infamously carried out using military power, the government was also able to find its way into the homes and heads of the German...
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A Jazzy Print
Between 1925 and 1927, the Stehli Silks Corporation produced the Americana Prints, a series of nearly 100 artist-designed dress silks for the modern woman. American artists, designers, celebrities and cartoonists were selected to create the prints, among them photographer Edward Steichen and cartoonist John Held Jr., who produced the piece featured here. Taken together, the...
tanaka
Remembering Hiroshima
The week of August 6, 1945, United States armed forces dropped two atomic bombs on Japan; the first landed that Monday on Hiroshima, and another arrived three days later in Nagasaki. While the attacks seemingly worked in the allies’ favor, with Japan surrendering the following week, the fallout was devastating for the island nation–it is...