Object of the Day

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Hybrid Pattern
Mathilde Flögl was a prolific and multi-disiplinary designer at the Wiener Werkstätte. Her experience as a graphic designer translated well for much of the surface design she executed in wallcoverings, glass, ceramics and textiles. She created ceramic figurines, assisted Josef Hoffmann with the ornamental elements in his metal work and interiors, and designed lace patterns...
Snow is in the Forecast
This is one of a very few wallpapers showing winter-related motifs. The design contains six different snowflakes that repeat twice across the width of the paper. This pattern was introduced in 1929 and is designed in a modernist style. Even today it still looks fresh and modern, printed in a single color on a solid...
Fruits of all Stripes
From squash to cherries and peppers to pineapple, Marion Weeber’s button designs are as simple as they are charming.  Her evocative shapes, bright colors, and whimsical stripe patterns unify this disparate array of fruits and vegetables, drawn in graphite and painted with watercolor.  The buttons themselves were made of individually molded celluloid-a synthetic plastic.  Cooper...
Six Years and Twenty-one Days
Elizabeth Ann Harpin Andrew was born on September 26, 1749, and stitched this sampler at the age of six. She ornamented her work with highly stylized floral motifs, framed with four-leaf clovers in a chain-link border. Elizabeth recorded the sampler’s completion date as October 17, 1755, and carefully calculated her age on that date as...
Simple Materials and a Prickly Texture Raise the Question, “What is it”?
This “pin” brooch, made in 1992 by jeweler Beppe Kessler, was part of a larger collection of “pin” brooches, each piece one of a kind. The series itself was derived from an installation by Kessler, also in 1992, which involved hanging large rounded, pin cushions on a wall. The brooches are an outgrowth of this...
An Architect’s Touch
The Danish designer Arne Jacobsen believed in the artist’s complete control over a project. Though originally trained as an architect, he had a hand in all aspects of his buildings’ designs, including the interiors. His works might be considered examples of Gesamtkunstwerk, or the total work of art, because of his individual and obsessive control...
A Battle in New Jersey
The “Views of the American War of Independence” was block printed by the French manufacturer Zuber & Cie starting in 1852 over the background of their prior scenic wallpaper called “Views of North America”; sections of both papers are housed at the Cooper Hewitt. In a complete set there are thirty-two panels, each individual panel...
Classicism, Consumerism and Tea
This distinctive tea urn takes the form of Atlas supporting the world. Its triangular base has openwork decoration and rests on three ball feet. The spherical urn is held aloft by the kneeling figure of Atlas, straining as he supports the globe on his shoulders. The surface is decorated with reliefs featuring four wreathed circular...
Faster, Higher, Stronger
In 1966, the influential German designer, Otl Aicher (1922–1991), was hired to design the 1972 Munich Olympic Games’ iconography, language, and overall graphic scheme. By this time, Aicher had worked to modernize brands like Braun (1956–66) and Lufthansa (1962–64) and was a co-founder of the Ulm College of Design, a school established upon a post-war...