Serious Play: Design in Midcentury America

Darrin Alfred (Author) Monica Obniski (Author)
& 2 more
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Product Details

Yale University Press
Publish Date
October 02, 2018
9.9 X 11.2 X 1.0 inches | 3.5 pounds

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About the Author

Monica Obniski is Demmer Curator of Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Design at the Milwaukee Art Museum. Darrin Alfred is curator of architecture, design, and graphics at the Denver Art Museum.


"As several contributors . . . point out, 'many designers . . . rejected a dogmatic modernism and hungered for something beyond rational and utilitarian motives.' The post-World War II era was marked by an acquisitive appetite, for which designers like Charles and Ray Eames and Alexander Girard devised colorful multitiered storage units, while ceramists like Eva Zeisel created charming table accoutrements to fill them."--Ann Landi, Wall Street Journal
"The scholarly, yet accessible, catalog, with its zippy, Pop design and multitude of striking illustrations, embodies the topic perfectly. It is fresh in both look and approach."--Kate Eagan Johnson, Antiques and the Arts Weekly
"After the solemnly revered austerity of prewar modernism and following the hiatus of war, design took a more playful turn. This book is a spirited reminder of those spirited days."--Stanley Abercrombie, Interior Design Magazine
"The design of this book also suggests the theme of its contents--that of design and play--with bright, colorful design elements. How play influenced mid-20th-century designers is explored in more than 200 illustrations and photographs of designers at work (or play) and examples of their work."--Maine Antique Digest