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In this Russian-designed poster for the German film ‘The Boxer’s Bride,’ the disembodied faces of a man and a woman smile out at the viewer from a black background, hovering above a stylized boxing ring. Their heads are enveloped in concentric circles, to give the impression of their presence as an apparition. In the boxing ring below, two fighters spar on a vibrant red floor, the white perimeter of the ring cutting rectangular outline, which appears as a stack of three suspended squares. Below, in blocky black letters on yellow, the title of the film in Russian. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
USSR In The Ring
In the early years of the Soviet Union, there was a strong urge to understand all elements of life in terms relating either to the bourgeoisie or the proletariat. Many longstanding assumptions pertaining to the role of arts and leisure in society were subject to ideological debate. Constructivist artists, eager to secure a role for...
A Modern Identity
This 1947 print by graphic designer Alvin Lustig presents an early logo design for the Hollywood animation production studio United Productions of America (UPA), founded in 1943 and primarily active through 1960. The graphic identity’s bold black circle with its vertical brown band embraces a simple and modern approach to portraying a classic film reel,...
Image of a Poster, Symphony of a Big City, 1928.
Berlin: Symphony of a Big City
Caitlin Condell discusses this Russian movie poster that utilizes themes of modernity, Constructivism, urban imagery, and the avant-garde found in The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s.
Maira Kalman: My Favorite Things, a film by Gael Towey
Don’t miss the world premiere of Gael Towey’s latest short film, Maira Kalman: My Favorite Things. The film profiles renowned visual storyteller Maira Kalman as she curates Maira Kalman Selects, one of our ten inaugural exhibitions. On the occasion of Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, the film will delight you with the story of his pocket watch—one...
Never Fast Forward the Credits!
One focus of Cooper-Hewitt’s current exhibition, Graphic Design—Now in Production, is the field of motion graphics. The exhibition features the opening credits of television series, like Six Feet Under and Dexter. Cooper-Hewitt asked Twitter followers which TV shows and movies they thought feature great title sequence design. A big thank you to followers @Epavisha, @Kmhaag, @Kelseykrz, @Cmoa,...
A Tale of Three Peripheries
Over the next months while the Design with the Other 90%: CITIES exhibition is on display at the United Nations Headquarters in New York several individuals whose own research explores the exhibition’s subject matter have been invited to write blog entries sharing their insights, related research and projects. – Cynthia E. Smith, Curator of Socially...
The Curve of Forgotten Things
It’s been just over a year since the stunning Rodarte exhibition here at Cooper-Hewitt. Known for finding inspiration in unexpected things, the prolific Rodarte duo have just released a fashion film to accompany their Spring 2011 collection. It’s inspired by 1970s northern California, redwood forests, the gold rush and various asian traditions. Titled after a...
Unlocking the Mysteries of the Universe
A picnic in the park as a starting point. This is the first of the grand challenges posed by Secretary Wayne Clough for the new strategic plan of the Smithsonian. Here’s the explanatory sentence: “We will continue to lead the quest to understand the fundamental nature of the cosmos, using next-generation technologies to explore our...
A Car in the House
The poster on the fence outside the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum showed a photograph of the Tata Nano with the caption “actual size.” That didn’t mean that it was easy to install for display in the museum, as you can see from this little movie (filmed by our media makers Shamus Adams and Alex Tibbets)....