Object of the Day

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Irish Awakening
In 1965, Jack Lenor Larsen made the first of sixteen trips to Ireland at an invitation from the Irish Export Board to develop fabrics for interiors. Using a mill specializing in worsted wool and a Donegal handweaving operation, he produced worsted damasks and tweed and satins with vegetable-dyed screen prints, which make up his 1969...
Lush Color and Texture Bring Life to Geometric Form
Folded into an open rhombus, and richly adorned with pigment, this brooch boldly uses color (achieved with the application of cobalt blue pigment) and texture (achieved by stippling the gold) to enhance its form. One look at this brooch by Giampaolo Babetto provides evidence of the mastery of gold present in his work. Babetto’s pieces cleverly...
Kangarouge
Somersaulting with dopey glee, a group of kangaroos thump around, lapping up wine from gravity defiant glasses.  Inebriated marsupials with bottles in their pouches?  Such a zany scene is characteristic of the work of beloved graphic artist and designer Ronald Searle (British, active France, 1920-2011).  His wry illustrations, ranging from caricature to cartoon and inspired...
A Walk on the Wild Side
This is a fun wallpaper showing a great use of positive and negative space. “Shadows of the Paranormal” illustrates the story of the search for the fabled Big Foot. Details have been simplified to the bare minimum, with all motifs rendered as silhouettes, while the creature’s features are reduced to a pair of eyes. In...
Robe of Descent
The visual complexity of the “robe of descent” (jiang yi絳衣) worn by the highest-ranking Daoist priests demonstrates how priests used symbols and words to control their environment. The complex symbols were believed to transform the wearer into a ritual participant who communicated between human and spirit worlds. The priest faced the altar to conduct rites,...
Designed for Comfort: The Allure of Resin “Gemstones”
During the last decade, Gaetano Pesce, long known for his varied designs and sense of experimentation, turned his attention to the creation of jewelry. Throughout his career Pesce has used resin to create such diverse objects as furniture, vases and shoes. Experimenting further, Pesce sought to create jewelry with this highly adaptable medium. To date,...
A Magical Era
Hans Moller, the German-born abstractionist known as a colorist, brought his predilection for vivid hues to his textile designs. His work was part of an assortment of imaginative midcentury designs produced by M. Lowenstein & Sons in partnership with Associated American Artists, a collective dedicated to creating accessible art. In Jumbo Junket, Moller’s circus-themed border...
Indiana Tower: An Unrealized Monument
In addition to creating models, architects often think through the planning stages of a building’s design by producing detailed, hyper-realistic drawings. While they may lack technical notations denoting dimensions or materials, these drawings provide an overall sense of the future building’s design. This 1981 charcoal and graphite rendering by Argentine-born architect Cesar Pelli depicts the...
Art Nouveau, the New Rococo
Stylized tulips and acanthus leaves flow skywards through this sidewall from the early eighteen nineties as though they are caught in a fast running stream. Their dynamic movement captures the eye and draws it along the sinuous curves of lithe stems and broad fronds that weave their way across the paper. Such a design is...