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Design

  • Branding Chicago

    The Art and Design of Promoting South Side Products

    By: Nancy Bishop - Jun 10th, 2015

    Valmor Products’ advertising and packaging is the subject of a funny, provocative and eye-opening exhibit at the Chicago Cultural Center. Love for Sale: The Graphic Art of Valmor Products runs until August 2 in the 4th floor north exhibit hall, just across from the not-to-be-missed exhibit of the paintings of Archibald Motley: Jazz Age Modernist.

  • Nudie's of Hollywood

    Gonzo Rhinestone Cowboy

    Nudie
    By: Charles Giuliano - Jun 24th, 2015

    The orange suit with bolero jacket and rhinestone designs was made for a one hit wonder who never picked it up. Since it was a perfect fit Nudie, the designer of the stars, made me an offer I could not refuse. Wearing it always resulted in total gonzo adventures.

  • Cooper-Hewitt Museum: 21st Century Design Focus

    New York Smithsonian Museum Reopens

    By: Mark Favermann - Dec 28th, 2014

    In its new, enlarged, and enhanced space, The Cooper-Hewitt Museum has increased its ability to present provocative and compelling perspectives on design. At its best, this museum pays homage to design as if it was great art: visitors are infused with delight and a sense of wonder by what design was, is, and what it means in our lives.

  • Ralph Pucci: The Art of the Mannequin

    On View at Museum of Arts and Design

    By: MAD - Feb 27th, 2015

    On view from March 31 to August 30, 2015, Ralph Pucci: The Art of the Mannequin is the first museum exhibition to explore the work of renowned New York-based designer Ralph Pucci, widely regarded for his innovative approach to the familiar form of the mannequin. The Museum of Arts and Design is located at Columbus Circle in New York City.

  • Encountering Louis Comfort Tiffany in the Berkshires

    Exquisite Windows of St. Stephen's Church in Pittsfield

    Tiffany
    By: Maria Reveley - Aug 05th, 2014

    Louis Comfort Tiffany's windows adorn Pittsfield's St. Stephen's Episcopal Church at Park Square. With the exception of the sanctuary windows, the stained glass windows were commissioned either from the Tiffany Glass Company of New York or Mary Tillinghast, who had been a pupil and partner of the master of American glass John La Farge. All were created and installed in the late 1890s.

  • Sochi 2014 Olympics Look of the Games

    A Too Busy Patchwork Quilt of Ethnic Imagery

    Sochi 2014
    By: Mark Favermann - Feb 07th, 2014

    The venues at Sochi look great, but like a too sweet holiday dessert, the Sochi Winter Olympics "Look" seems to try too hard to please everyone by the way it visually frames the 2014 Winter Games. Similar to Vancouver's 2010 everything including the kitchen sink approach to branding and graphic identity, Sochi's "look" works better. Too visually and perhaps ethnically layered, the " patchwork quilt" looks best on athletes' bibs and venue interiors. Perhaps, it has something to do with the Russian Character?

  • Body & Soul at Museum of Arts and Design

    A Dialogue with Curator Wendy Tarlow Kaplan

    MAD
    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 07th, 2013

    The Museum of Arts and Design in New York City through March 2 is exhibiting Body & Soul: New International Ceramics. The medium has been used by artists to express a wide range of charged social issues including identity, sexuality, bullying, abuse, violence, rebellion and despair. Recently we discussed the project with Wendy Tarlow Kaplan who co curated the exhibition with Martin S. Kaplan and Laurent de Verneuil.

  • 2013 National Design Awards Announced

    Cooper-Hewitt Museum Honors Design Achievement

    National Design Awards 2013
    By: Mark Favermann - May 17th, 2013

    The National Design Awards program celebrates design as a vital humanistic tool in shaping the world, and seeks to increase national awareness of design by educating the public and promoting excellence, innovation, and lasting achievement. This year's award-winners are from a variety of design disciplines.

  • The Genius of Everyday Things At MIT

    Practical Simplicity Married to Functional Elegance

    Hidden Heroes
    By: Mark Favermann - May 03rd, 2013

    Hidden Heroes is a design exhibition that includes cases of objects, patent drawings, movies and advertising posters. Showcasing the importance of elegant design of seemingly simple but highly useful objects, this array of 36 classic items embodies ideals of modernism that are both relevant and popular. Here function literally follows form. In basic terms, this is the underlying story of the marriage of creativity, industry and invention.

  • Brian Jewett’s Unique Baskets

    Warp and Woof

    Brian
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 20th, 2013

    This past winter Brian Jewett worked on several new basket designs using plastic ties. Before shipping them to Snyderman-Works Gallery in Philadelphia he sent images to friends and collectors. He created an earlier version of the designs as a chandelier above our dining room table.

  • NYC Phone Booth Competition Missed Call

    Free Design Work Is Just Crowdsourcing for Startups

    Missed Call
    By: Mark Favermann - Mar 17th, 2013

    It is unfair that public artists, designers and architects do free work to get commissions. With some fanfare, several interesting hip judges and techno startups as point entities, another Competition has taken place with little to win for all of the effort that was put forth. Taken seriously, the results from a competition to replace the antiquated and often out of order call boxes would be an imaginative series of solutions. But instead it was only a minor creative conversation. And words are cheap. Here design is shown in fits and starts and undetermined consequences.

  • Tasty Gourmet Food Trucks

    Though Around for Long Time, A Strong New Design Trend

    Gourmet Food Trucks
    By: Mark Favermann - Dec 26th, 2012

    Starting in the 19th Century as Chuck Wagons on cattle drives, then becoming convenient lunch wagons in urban centers and a childhood memory as ice cream trucks, the growing and refined gastronomical convoy of Gourmet Food Trucks are now a provocative piece of the urban fabric. Their design and placement have many moving parts and add color, vitality and new sophisticated tastes to our lives.

  • The Unaesthetic American Cell Tower

    Ma Bell's Children Are Philistines

    Cell Towers
    By: Mark Favermann - Nov 25th, 2012

    For the past decade and a half, the various American phone service entities have "created" rather inelegant cell towers to expand the best service to their customers. This has been a rather lazy engineering experience. Certainly enlisting designers and sculptors to the task would have brought better results. However, some European phone companies have brought flair and a public beauty.

  • Liminal Objects at Harvard's Design School

    A Conference to Discuss the Object in Spatial Context

    Liminal Objects
    By: Mark Favermann - Oct 25th, 2012

    Approaching design from differing points of view, Liminal Objects initiated a conference series at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design about design that aims to identify pressing issues within the field by exploring the designed object’s role in diverse spatial practices. Designers, academics, critics and curators looked objectively at the designed object.

  • Grafica Italiana In Milan

    Exhibit at the Palazzo dell’Arte-Triennale

    By: Nelida Nassar - Aug 07th, 2012

    Milan’s Triennale Design Museum, housed at the Palazzo dell’Arte-Triennale is a cultural institution dedicated to the promotion and development of Italian creativity through contemporary graphics. “Grafica italiana” presents a glimpse into Italian graphic design. It offers a paced journey through a discipline long considered minor and ancillary while presenting the tools of visual culture that enrich our daily life.

  • Furniture with Soul At Gallery NAGA

    Referencing the Book Furniture with Soul by David Savage

    Furniture With Soul
    By: Mark Favermann - Jun 01st, 2012

    This exquisite exhibit is a continuation of Gallery NAGA's exploration of the most innovative studio furniture. The show is an assemblage of an all-star cast of furnituremakers from throughout the US and across the Atlantic. Seventeen outstanding examples from the pantheon of master furnituremakers creates a compelling visual and tactile experience to savor.

  • The Emotion of Design

    Why Does the Best Design Viscerally Connect To Us?

    The Emotion of Design
    By: Mark Favermann - Apr 26th, 2012

    Why do we "like" even "love" certain objects? And others we do not? Is it somehow in our DNA? How did Apple (Steven Jobs) connect so well with our wants despite what our needs are? Our objects of desire strike emotional chords. It isn't just about aesthetics, but certainly that is a major aspect of what the resonance of desire and ownership are. Designers wrestle constantly with an element's functional form. Getting it just right has less to do with science than art. This is true of a structure, object or fashion statement.

  • Isamu Noguchi, Poetic Sculptor/Designer

    Erasing The Line Between Form and Function

    Isamu Noguchi
    By: Mark Favermann - Feb 26th, 2012

    The line between what is art and what is design is a wonderful area of connected delight. The late Isamu Noguchi was one of the greatest practitioners of this hybrid form usually as creative functional sculpture. His elegant furniture and furnishings are still in production and cherished today. His minimalist abstract sculpture are still strong statements of his eloquent visual language. Noguchi erased the line between form and function.

  • Eva Zeisel, Ceramic Designer Dies At 105

    A Playful Search For Beauty

    Eva Zeisel At 105
    By: Mark Favermann - Dec 31st, 2011

    Eva Zeisel, one of the most influential industrial designers of the 20th Century who created beautifully lyrical yet practical tableware and ceramics, has died at the amazing age of 105. Zeisel estimated that she had designed 100,000 pieces of tableware. Many of her elegant curving organic pieces often appeared to have human qualities, particularly in the way they tended to hug and nestle. These playful, simple designs first produced in the 1940s are still popular.

  • From Train Tracks to A Public Art Walk

    Newburyport's Triumphant Clipper City Rail Trail

    Clipper City Rail Trail
    By: Mark Favermann - Dec 17th, 2011

    After 11 years of planning, meetings, grantsmanship, engineering oversight and curating public art, Geordie Vining established the Clipper City Rail Trail on the west side of the City of Newburyport, MA. He took an unused Boston & Maine railroad right of way and created a walking, jogging and biking pathway that was enhanced by public art. The result is a true pride of place.

  • The Eames Iconic Plywood Leg Splint

    A Breakthrough Design Leading To New Furniture

    Eames Leg Splint
    By: Mark Favermann - Dec 10th, 2011

    At the beginning of WWII, the United States War Department was in a dilemma. They needed a more modular, lightweight way of splinting wounded personnel. They turned to the creative Venice Beach based designers, Charles and Ray Eames, to help solve the problem. The Eameses had been working on molding plywood for the previous few years. Having accessible the Navy's facilities, their design team was able to develop a molded plywood splint. Sculptural and elegant, it is now a design icon.

  • Josef Hoffmann: Wiener Werkstätte Designer

    Influential Designer With No Moral Compass

    Josef Hoffmann
    By: Mark Favermann - Nov 29th, 2011

    Josef Hoffmann was one of the major designers of the first half of the 20th Century. His work across architecture, interiors, furniture and household objects was of great technical and aesthetic beauty. Also, he lived a long time. Unfortunately, his design skill did not always correspond to his moral integrity. Somehow, he was confused at the end of his life as to why he was not honored for his creative contributions. Perhaps, it was the fact that his last major work was for the wrong client.

  • Powered By Free Design

    UK Pylon Competition Sought New Design

    Pylon Competition
    By: Mark Favermann - Nov 29th, 2011

    Called Britain's "industrial soldiers," they have marched across hills and valleys carrying the UK's 400,000-volt power lines. Now the British government and National Grid are ending the 84-year-old design of the electricity pylon. A competition was held to find a more attractive 21st-century alternative to carry power across hundreds of miles of British countryside. On paper, the idea sounds great, the winning design is elegant, but once again the design community is being undervalued and having demanded from it free work.

  • Boston MFA Embraces Contemporary Decorative Arts, Craft and Design As Major Commitment

    New Curator and New Dedicated Gallery Space

    Boston MFA Contemporary Decorative Arts
    By: Mark Favermann - Oct 29th, 2011

    The Boston MFA has made a serious commttment to contemporary decorative arts. This has been a cumulative effort by Director Malcolm Rogers over the last decade and half. With the opening of the Linde Family Contemporary Art Wing in October, there was the opening of the first dedicated gallery to contemporary decorative art, the Farago Gallery. To curate this gallery and to integrate contemporary decorative arts, craft and design with the rest of contemporary visual art, the museum hired Emily Zilber as the first contemporary decorative arts curator. And this isn't all.

  • John Eric Byers at Gallery NAGA

    Furniture, Carved Paintings and Production Prototypes

    Byers At Gallery NAGA
    By: Mark Favermann - Oct 27th, 2011

    In a new and much awaited show at Gallery NAGA, Studio Furniture master John Eric Byers is exploring different directions and colors for his elegant and very precise work. Though often simple in form, the sometimes textured pieces are sophisticated objects of desire.

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