American Art Deco: An Illustrated Survey

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Courier Corporation, 2004 - Antiques & Collectibles - 176 pages
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'American Art Deco' was inspired, in part, by the industrial age and Native American art, and championed by progressive architects. This volume includes scores of photographs and articles that describe the aesthetics of this great mode of artistic expression. An introduction by architectural critic Lewis Mumford is followed by comments from such notables as Frank Lloyd Wright on design principles, theatrical and industrial designer Norman Bel Geddes on outfitting business interiors and Edward Steichen on commercial photography.This book is indicated to architects, graphic artists, photographers, and lovers of the Art Deco style. The book shows 200 black-and-white illustrations.
 

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Contents

THE SHOP
11
THE HOME
25
TEXTILES
47
NEW MATERIALS
65
INDUSTRIAL DESIGN
79
ARCHITECTURE
105
HALLS WALLS AND FITTINGS
121
GRAPHIC ARTS IN ADVERTISING
139
COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPHY
157

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Page 9 - ... beauty" at first hand, he demands it in some cheaper reproduction or caricature: America dyed catskin takes the place of ermine; and debased rococo furniture, built out of poorly seasoned wood and carved by the machine, simulates the luxury of the Renaissance. Now the best industrial designs of today psychologically contradict the standards of this society. They are cheap; they are common; they fulfill their peculiar function; whereas, to satisfy the canons of conspicuous waste, an industrial...
Page 9 - ... eye or the mind. One may say, l think, that the canons of machine design have been established: the success of any particular design now rests with the skill and personality of the designer: a tradition is already in existence. But the problem of design does not end in the studio and the factory. lt is plain that the victory which has been achieved in architecture by Wright, Gropius, Le Corbusier, and Mies van der Rohe, and which has been the product of a hundred almost anonymous designers in...
Page 9 - ... and rugs and chairs begin to show a common spirit: they exhibit the clean lines, the fine sense of fitness, and the exquisite proportions which must always be present in machine work, since lacking these characteristics, it has few other charms with which to seduce the eye or the mind. One may say, l think, that the canons of machine design have been established: the success of any particular design now rests with the skill and personality of the designer: a tradition is already in existence....
Page 10 - Before modern industrial design can conquer every department of life we shall have to change our standards and attitudes. lndustrial design has improved most swiftly in departments of the household, like the kitchen, where practical functions must be performed, and in the construction of cheap workers' houses, where the demands of economy were uppermost, whether the worker himself was pleased with this fact or not. With these two exceptions, the best modern designs, such as those of Djo Bourgeois,...

About the author (2004)

Dick Leonard, a former Labour MP, is a political writer and journalist who has worked for "The Economist and "The Observer. He is author or co-author of many books, including "Elections in Britain (Palgrave Macmillan, 2001).

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