Art Deco

Stairway to Modernism: Thérèse Bonney Collection


Upon first glance it is difficult to tell if we are looking up or down this spiral staircase.  Clean lines intersect with natural light, casting shadows that create a deceptive flattening effect from this vantage point. What appear to be stairs descending counterclockwise with no railing is actually the underside of the staircase designed to mimic the stairs above.   
Art Deco, modernism, Robert Mallet-Stevens, paris, Architecture, staircase, photograph

A Modern Bird


This art-deco style wallcovering was created in the early twentieth century in France. It was first featured as an advertisement for its importer, W.H.S.  Lloyd Co., in the March 1930 edition of House Beautiful. W.H.S.  Lloyd Co. was a significant importer of English, French and Japanese wall hangings, so they definitely had a distinct eye for collecting beautiful wallcoverings around the world.  Literally translated into the “Modern Bird”, this wallcovering is a premier example of the French modern movement.
bird, modern, wallpaper, oiseau, moderne, machine print, Art Deco

Design for Corsage Ornament


 
Rene Lalique, Siegfried Bing, Hector Guimard, Louis Comfort Tiffany, Art Nouveau, Faberge, Art Deco, Glass, jewelry design

Illuminating New York: Caldwell & Company


This black and white photograph represents just one of 37,000 from the National Design Library's Caldwell & Company Collection. Also containing 13,000 original drawings and watercolor sketches, this immense visual resource comprises one of the largest lighting fixture archives by a single American company.
lighting, Art Deco, Carnegie mansion, ceiling fixture, metalwork

Art Deco: Cubism and Classical Tradition


If  c.1900 - 1914 the international avant-garde held sway over the cultural life of Paris, the period immediately following World War I -- often referred to as the "return to order" --  saw a renewal of French cultural values -- that is, "tradition" and, of course, "Classicism."  When these values in design were touched by the lingering spirit of the avant-garde, the result was one of the most successful and admired styles of the 20th century:  Art Deco.
Terry Ryan, Art Deco, Louis Sue, Andre Mare, Architectures, National Design Library, Cubism, La Compagnie dea Arts Francais, Paul Valery

Is that really a textile?


At first glance, Figures with Still Life, designed by Ruth Reeves, looks like a modern art painting. I did a double take when I realized it was, instead, a screen printed textile on plain weave. Throughout her career, Reeves designed a variety of objects in modern styles including tapestries, wall hangings, wall fabrics, carpeting, and dresses. 
Ruth Reeves, Art Deco, Cubism, figures representing daily life, wall hanging

Wall Treatments with Impact


These two designs were among the samples removed from a wallpaper sample book produced by the Grantil Company in 1928. While each of these patterns is boldly styled and colored in itself, they were designed to be used in tandem. A number of samples contained in this book had applied lithographed illustrations showing the manufacturer’s suggestions for using these papers to best effect, which often included the combination of multiple papers on a single wall.
Art Deco, wallpaper, pink, patterns

A Deskey Table


Cooper-Hewitt is fortunate to have the archive of renowned American modernist designer, Donald Deskey, as well as a number of Deskey objects, in its collection. A versatile practitioner in many design disciplines—exhibition and interior design, furniture, lighting, and packaging—Deskey was also a pioneer in the field of industrial design.
Donald Deskey, Ypsilanti Reed Furniture Company, Edward Durell Stone, Richard H. Mandel House, Marcel Breuer, Bedford Hills, New York, Radio City Music Hall, Exposition internationale des arts décoratifs et industriels modernes, Art Deco, International Style, modernism

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