Rudolf
A Real Art for Living
Wallpaper offers artists and designers an opportunity to translate their designs within a domestic environment. The Rudolf (ca. 2015) wallcovering manufactured by Élitis is the first lenticular print produced for the interior. Lenticular printing is the process of multiple pictures intertwined into one image that produces a three-dimensional effect and creates a new medium for...
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A Bruce Goff residence
“In architecture, there are no limits to forms, colors, and textures that you feel you should use. Feeling is the important thing; that you should actually feel something about your problem.” [1] The words of architect Bruce Goff ring true throughout his brilliant and oftentimes bizarre architectural projects. Goff’s notable work in church, home, and...
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Exploring a Decorative Bandbox
Bandboxes, a decorative yet practical item of an earlier time, were originally used as receptacles for holding men’s neckbands in the early 17th century. Although they continued to hold that purpose heading into the 19th century, women would soon adapt them to carry their personal items and accessories. Between the years 1820 and 1845, the...
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Lella Vignelli: A Look at a Design Legend
Versatile designer Lella Vignelli, who died on December 22nd, played a vital role in firmly establishing the clean lines and clarity of Modernism in twentieth century American design. Her designs were pertinent throughout the late twentieth century and remain so today. Vignelli was born into a family of architects in Udine, Italy in 1934. She...
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American Drawings Story
Last month in Cooper Hewitt Short Stories, we explored a world of textiles encapsulated in a generous gift to Cooper Union by J.P. Morgan. In January’s short story, written by Gail Davidson, former Curator and Head of Drawings, Prints & Graphic Design at Cooper Hewitt, the work of three important American artists come together to...
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A Traveling Television
At the 1939 World’s Fair in New York, the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) debuted its first electronic television, a symbol of American innovation and technological prospects.[1] However, the advent of World War II impeded the expansion of television, and the commercial development of receivers did not begin until 1946. In that first year, only...
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Make Do and Mend: The Art of Repair
MENDING TRADITIONS Mending used to be a widespread households practice. Linens and clothes were carefully maintained. The main motivation was economic: it was much cheaper to repair fabrics and garments than to purchase new items. Textile history is filled with compelling examples of repairs. In the eighteenth-century Great Britain and Holland, young girls learned how to mend on darning samplers. They patiently filled holes...
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Jens Risom: Master of Scandinavian Furniture
The Model 666WSP Chair, from 1943, is an example of the furniture designed by Danish-American designer Jens Risom, who died at 100 on December 9, 2016. Risom was the son of a prominent Danish architect and he, himself, is often regarded as one of the founders of midcentury modern design in America. He came to...
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Rebel Nell: Designing Against Defiant Odds
Amy Peterson, a Detroit lawyer, envisioned Rebel Nell—an enterprise that creates unique jewelry from scrap pieces of graffiti—after moving next to one of Detroit’s shelters. While walking her dog, she began talking to women she met, and after listening to their stories and challenges, Peterson started a social enterprise with a vision to help women...