Artistic Affinities: On the edge of something new at the Shelburne Museum

jbitenc Art

Electra Havemeyer Webb, the founder of the Shelburne Museum, was a collector of astonishingly wideranging interests. Her diversity of tastes is reflected in holdings that include carriages, decoys, weather vanes, and antique bedcoverings, as well as paintings by Manet, Courbet, and Monet, and the steamboat Ticonderoga. Yet with its pastoral Vermont setting and a campus dotted with examples of vernacular New England architecture, the museum is primarily associated by many with its outstanding collection of folk art and Americana.

The Yale Center for British Art Reopens

nanderson Art

The Library Court of the Yale Center for British Art, following its recent reinstallation. Photograph by Richard Caspole.     Traditional architecture can age gracefully but nothing is more dispiriting than modernism gone to seed. That may be especially true of Louis Kahn’s work because Kahn hid nothing; it was part of his bravery, and his ethics, to put every …

Gray matters

Editorial Staff Exhibitions, Furniture & Decorative Arts

Recent films, exhibitions, and books re-establish Eileen Gray’s reputation and start to set the record straight   History was made at the Grand Palais in Paris on February 24, 2009, when lot 276 in Christie’s sale of the collection of Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé was hammered down. In the midst of an economic recession, Eileen Gray’s Dragons armchair …

Southern California modernism engages colonial New England

Editorial Staff Art

from The Magazine ANTIQUES, July/August 2012 | An advertisement placed by the Los Angeles department store Barker Brothers in the Los Angeles Times on November 13, 1929, records the earliest appearance of Porter Blanchard’s Commonwealth pattern, the first American flatware pattern to embrace modernism in both form and ornament (Fig. 3). Nine months later Barker Brothers featured Commonwealth again, in …

At home in modernism: The John C. Waddell collection of American design

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

Photography by John M. Hall | from The Magazine ANTIQUES, May/June 2012 | The art of today must be created today,” the designer and author Paul T. Frankl wrote in 1928. “It must express the life about us. It must reflect the main characteristics and earmarks of our own complex civilization.”1 Over the past four decades, collector John C. Waddell …

Multiple modernisms on exhibit in New York

Editorial Staff Art, Exhibitions

Early twentieth—century modernism-particularly that of Austria and Germany—seems to be all over New York this fall, with two exhibitions at the Guggenheim—Kandinsky, and Gabriel Munter and Vasily Kandisnky 1902-14: A life in Photographs—one at the Museum of Modern Art—Bauhaus 1919-1933: Workshops for Modernity, and yet another at the Neue Galerie: From Klimt to Klee: Masterworks from the Serge Sebarsky Collection, …

Design and reform: the making of the Bauhaus

Editorial Staff Art

October 2009 | In our time  the name Bauhaus has become a synonym for high modernism, a stand-in for the purist design language of the years between the two world wars and beyond. For many it is now a stylistic descriptor, a sort of shorthand for a specific look, often understood without any temporal attachment or historical meaning. But the …

Great Estates: Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West in Scottsdale, Arizona

Editorial Staff

“Living in the desert is the spiritual cathartic a great many people need.  I am one of them.” -FLW This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the iconic Fifth Avenue building designed by seminal architect Frank Lloyd Wright. The museum’s golden anniversary has inspired a year-long series of events beginning with the exhibition Frank Lloyd …

Instant Symposium: The Kitchen Debate, 50 years later

Editorial Staff

Today marks the 50th anniversary of President Richard Nixon and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev’s infamous Kitchen Debate at the 1959 American National Exhibition in Moscow. Their clash of ideologies played out among a series of show rooms—including a model kitchen by General Electric—and was broadcast worldwide, quickly becoming a seminal moment in the history of the Cold War. We asked …

Kem Weber and the rise of modern design in Southern California

Editorial Staff

May 2009 | In the fall of 1926 Barker Brothers, then the largest furniture retailer in the United States, opened a striking new shop on the fourth floor of its eleven-story building in downtown Los Angeles. The new “store-within-a-store,” christened “Modes and Manners,” was the brainchild of the young designer Kem Weber (Fig. 2). It was not only the first …