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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Modern by Design | High Museum of Art | Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America

This summer’s modern exhibition from the High Museum of Art will  be “Modern by Design.”  The exhibition will be on view exclusively in Atlanta from June 4 through August 14, 2011.

Chronicling the design collection history of and the development of 20th century modernism by the Museum of Modern Art, New York (MoMA), this exhibition will include nearly 150 works (furniture, glass, ceramics, lighting, product, and industrial design) created by over 120 artists and designers. A companion installation will feature the High Museum of Art’s growing collection of contemporary design. “Modern by Design” continues a multi-year, multi-exhibition collaboration between the High and MoMA. clip_image002[1]Modern By Design

From High Life, the Magazine of the High Museum of Art.

Since its inception in 1929 MoMA has been at the forefront of recognizing pivotal moments of radical change in twentieth-century design through its exhibition and collection program. As part of the High’s ongoing collaboration with MoMA, “Modern by Design” will present a selection of works chronicling three key moments in MoMA’s design collection and exhibition history. "Machine Art" (1934), “Good Design” (1950-1955) and “Italy: The New Domestic Landscape” (1972) that heralded groundbreaking aesthetic movements and intellectual considerations. Nearly 150 objects created by more than 120 of the most influential artists and designers of the twentieth century will be included. A companion installation, “High Design,” will incorporate 20 works by nine designers from the High's growing collection of contemporary design.

Machine Art
The first key moment the exhibition will highlight is the year 1934, with a look at work featured in MoMA's “Machine Art” exhibition, curated by Philip Johnson that year. “Machine Art” showcased machines, machine parts, scientific instruments and everyday objects—from springs, ball bearings, and propellers to calipers, glass wares and furniture. Displayed in the galleries against white walls with platforms and dramatic lighting, these objects were presented for the first time at the level of fine art, which celebrated their functionalism and aesthetic purity. The exhibition in turn boosted sales of these attainable American-made products and was the first in MoMA history to contribute works to the collection. Eighteen objects by 13 designers will be part of the installation at the High.

Good Design
Eager to cultivate a taste for modernism and shape consumer culture at large, MoMA at mid-century exhibited numerous works of so-called Good Design including furniture, textiles, lighting and everyday objects such as vegetable peelers, an ax, a clothes hamper and a plumb bob. These were famously displayed in the competition/exhibition series “Good Design” (1950-1955), directed by Edgar Kaufmann, Jr. This second highlighted moment is presented in the context of its significant precursors, the tremendously successful competitions (and their corresponding exhibitions) “Organic Design in Home Furnishing” (1940-1941) and the “International Competition for Low-Cost Furniture” (1948-1950). In all of these projects MoMA joined forces with manufacturers and designers to promote new aesthetics and affordable products. Key works in this section include furniture by the young designers Charles Eames and Eero Saarinen, colorful textiles by Alexander Girard, Tupperware and abstract, sculptural lamps by George Nelson and Greta von Nessen. As a testament to their enduring popularity, some of these works are still in production today. The High will feature 109 objects by 78 designers in this section of the exhibition.

Italy: The New Domestic Landscape
In 1972 “Italy: The New Domestic Landscape” addressed the idea of modernism in the context of 1960s and 1970s counterculture, and serves as the third key moment explored in the exhibition. Focusing on the international significance of contemporary Italian design as well as new ideas about casual and flexible lifestyles, the works on display illustrated the growing divergence between modernist design and radical “anti-design,” setting the tone for postmodernism in the decades to come. Aimed at youth culture and using such new materials as plastic and polyurethane foam, Pop-inspired designs such as the “Blow” inflatable chair (1967) by De Pas, Lomazzi and Di'Urbino and the “Malitte” seating system (1966) by Matta have become icons of the period. Twenty-one objects by 30 designers will be part of the installation at the High.

High Design
In conjunction with “Modern by Design,” the High will present an installation of late-twentieth- and early-twenty-first-century design drawn from the High's growing permanent collection. The seven artists featured will represent the diversity and international character of the field today, and over 20 proposed and recent acquisitions will include prototypes, limited editions, industrial production and installations by the foremost Western and non-Western designers from two generations. Featured designers include Ettore Sottsass (Italian, 1917-2007); Johanna Grawunder (American, born 1961); Shiro Kuramata (Japanese, 1934-1991); Nendo/Oki Sato (Japanese, born 1977); Patrick Jouin (French, born 1967); Hella Jongerius (Dutch, born 1963); and Joris Laarman (Dutch, born 1979).

Reference

Retrieved February 15, 2011 from the High Museum of Art.  http://www.high.org/main.taf?erube_fh=erblog&erblog.submit.PostDetail=true&erblog.blogid=33&erblog.BlogPostID=1022


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