Object of the Day

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Oranges and Lemons
This delightful sidewall for a nursery is the work of Dorothy Hilton, a late Victorian designer of which sadly little is known. She was based in Birmingham and had a sister Agnes who was also a designer. Articles in the Studio record that she exhibited at the 1899 National Competition of the South Kensington schools...
Lost Urban Theatres
Elizabeth Broman discusses Joseph Urban's theatre design. His murals for the Ziegfeld Theatre are now on view in The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s.
Picture of a Designed by Rick Valicenti
gee dad, modern design, huh?
This poster by graphic designer Rick Valicenti is loaded with iconic commercial imagery. In 1994, Valicenti received the commission to design a poster introducing the Northstar and Broughton Printing Company’s new eight-color press. His resulting design is at once an advertisement for the new press as well as a provocation that questions the role of...
A Glass Palace Fit For A Bird
This beautiful birdcage comprised of glass, brass and plexiglass was designed by Charles Lin Tissot. Although best known for his domestic glassware designed for Steuben, this birdcage from the Glass Gardens collection is an escape to a realm of fantasy. This birdcage was produced during the years that Tissot collaborated with the Venini glassworks in...
Picture of a Textile: Grand Feuillage, ca. 1920, designed by Raoul Dufy
Exuberant Leaves
Now on view in The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s, this Dufy textile proclaims modernity in its abstracted pattern.
Picture of a Lalique necklace
For the Birds: René Lalique’s Glass Necklace
René Lalique was one of the most versatile jewelry artists working in the twentieth century, in that he was equally successful in two periods of design history. Lalique created both luxurious one-off pieces for fashionable ladies during the art nouveau period and also successfully created mass-produced glass pieces in the style moderne. Lauded during the...
Façade, Remembered
The ephemeral Midtown Manhattan edifice of the American Folk Art Museum, once described as a “handsome flake of metallic crystal glinting on West 53rd Street,” lives on thanks to sketches like this one, donated by Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects (TWBTA) to Cooper Hewitt shortly after the building was completed in late 2001. Unveiled “at...
Making History: Clayton’s Ascent
Many of you have probably read my earlier blogs on bandboxes so I won’t elaborate on their purpose. They were originally designed to store and transport men’s removable collar bands, hence the name, but they were also used for hats and as general carry-all’s. Many boxes in the 1830s and 40s commemorated historic events of...
New Sound for an Old Theatre
In 1937, Cooper Hewitt acquired blueprints and drawings made by Swiss-American architect William Lescaze. The drawing above shows Lescaze’s 1934 plan for the redesign of New York’s Avon Theater at 251 W 45th street. The original theater, designed by architect Eugene De Rosa, was known as the Klaw Theatre. The name changed to the Avon...