Mid-Century Modern Interiors: The Ideas that Shaped Interior Design in America

Mid-Century Modern Interiors: The Ideas that Shaped Interior Design in America

by Lucinda Kaukas Havenhand


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Mid-Century Modern Interiors explores the history of interior design during arguably its most iconic and influential period.

The 1930s to the 1960s in the United States was a key moment for interior design. It not only saw the emergence of some of interior design's most globally-important designers, it also saw the field of interior design emerge at last as a profession in its own right. Through a series of detailed case studies this book introduces the key practitioners of the period – world-renowned designers including Ray and Charles Eames, Richard Neutra, and George Nelson – and examines how they developed new approaches by applying systematic and rational principles to the creation of interior spaces. It takes us into the mind of the designer to show how they each used interior design to express their varied theoretical interests, and reveals how the principles they developed have become embodied in the way interior design is practiced today. This focus on unearthing the underlying ideas and concepts behind their designs rather than on the finished results creates a richer, more conceptual understanding of this pivotal period in modernist design history.

With an extended introduction setting the case studies within the broader context of twentieth-century design and architectural history, this book provides both an introduction and an in-depth analysis for students and scholars of interior design, architecture and design history.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781350045712
Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
Publication date: 01/24/2019
Pages: 176
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.33(h) x 0.52(d)

About the Author

Dr. Lucinda Kaukas Havenhand teaches design history, theory and studio at Syracuse University where she is a Professor in the School of Design.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations viii

Acknowledgments xi

Preface xii

Introduction 1

1 Nostalgic Modern and the "American Way of Life" Russel Mary Wright 7

2 Richard Neutra and the Therapeutic Interior 35

3 The Eames House and a New Language of Vision 61

4 Humanism, Morality, and the Japanese Aesthetic George Nelson 81

5 The Interiors of Florence Knoll: Structure, Luxury, and the Kunstwollen of Postwar America 105

Conclusion 129

Notes 138

Suggested Readings 142

Index 146

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