Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/exhibitions/404734319/

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection Energizing the Everyday celebrates the collecting vision of George R. Kravis II and its synergy with Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum's broad and diverse collection of modern and contemporary design. An early interest in records and a background in broadcasting inform Kravis's enthusiasm for and knowledge of radios, televisions, and technology. As Kravis's passion for design grew, he expanded his collecting efforts beyond American electronic devices to include industrial design and furnishings for the home and office from America, Europe, and Asia. This exhibition showcases highlights of the Kravis collection dating from the early 20th century to the present. From industrial design and furniture to tableware and textiles, the exhibition makes visual and material connections across time and geography. As a collector, Kravis is interested in the object's user, purpose, process, and manufacturing while also considering form and substance. The good design of these objects enhanced the day-to-day activities of the home and workplace, as well as during travel and leisure. The rigid geometry of Norman Bel Geddes's skyscraper-like ca.1931 Manhattan Cocktail Set, the humor of Cesare Cassati's and C. Emanuele Ponzio's 1968 Pillola Lamps, and the social concerns reflected in Olafur Eliasson's Little Sun Solar Powered LED Lantern of 2012 are among the many historic and contemporary themes enlivened in Energizing the Everyday.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734435/

  • Designed by Verner Panton
  • Manufactured by Vitra AG
  • steel, stainless steel, molded plastic, woven wool upholstery
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • red
  • seating
  • chair
  • heart-shaped
  • heart

"In kindergarten one learns to love and use colors. Later on, at school and in life, one learns something called taste. For most people this means limiting their use of colors.” (Verner Panton, Notes on Color, 1997) The exaggerated shape of the Heart Cone chair’s back glances coyly toward traditional enveloping wing chairs, but its bright-red upholstery and playful form reveal a pop sensibility.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18344543/

  • photostat on paper
  • Gift of William E. Lescaze
  • architecture
  • modernism
  • curved
  • presentation drawing
  • glass
  • rectilinear
  • residential

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18344545/

  • graphite on white tracing paper
  • Gift of William E. Lescaze
  • architecture
  • theater
  • presentation drawing
  • reuse
  • fluid lines
  • CBS
  • Broadway

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18344991/

  • Designed by Raymond Loewy
  • Manufactured by Pennsylvania Railroad
  • graphite, yellow crayon on tracing paper
  • Gift of the Pennsylvania Railroad through Samuel M. Vauclain
  • streamlined
  • transportation
  • industrial design
  • sleek
  • railroad
  • speed
  • train

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18344993/

  • Designed by Raymond Loewy
  • Manufactured by Pennsylvania Railroad
  • graphite, black crayon on white tracing paper
  • Gift of the Pennsylvania Railroad through Samuel M. Vauclain
  • transportation
  • industrial design
  • presentation drawing
  • railroad
  • speed
  • streamline

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18344995/

  • Designed by Raymond Loewy
  • Manufactured by Pennsylvania Railroad
  • graphite on white tracing paper
  • Gift of the Pennsylvania Railroad through Samuel M. Vauclain
  • streamlined
  • travel
  • transportation
  • transport
  • clients
  • industrial design
  • presentation drawing
  • product promotion
  • trains
  • engineering
  • railroad
  • logos
  • speed

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18344997/

  • Designed by Raymond Loewy
  • Manufactured by Pennsylvania Railroad
  • graphite on white tracing paper
  • Gift of the Pennsylvania Railroad through Samuel M. Vauclain
  • travel
  • transportation
  • sleek
  • trains
  • railroad
  • speed
  • streamline

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18411573/

  • machine-printed paper
  • Gift of Marburger Tapetenfabrik
  • All-over

The very gestural nature of this design, which appears like random crayon scribbles, creates a causal, relaxed environ. These abstract designs are typical of post-War German design, and coordinated well with the more minimal mid-century aesthetic.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18451483/

  • Designed by Lenore Tawney
  • linen, wool, goat hair
  • Gift of Elizabeth Gordon
  • art
  • exhibition
  • wall hanging
  • neutral colors
  • diagonal lines
  • blurry

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18452119/

  • photostat mounted on illustration board
  • Gift of Mrs. Hugh Ferriss
  • streamlined
  • advertising
  • promotion
  • modernism
  • black and white
  • urban planning
  • construction
  • skyscraper

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18452127/

  • photostat on sensitized paper
  • Gift of Mrs. Hugh Ferriss
  • architecture
  • airlines
  • transportation
  • airplanes
  • sleek
  • streamline

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18458505/

  • Designed by Anni Albers
  • cotton, plastic strips, lurex (colored film-coated foil)
  • Gift of Anni Albers
  • metallic
  • stripes
  • domestic interiors
  • curtain
  • furnishing fabric
  • reflective
  • acoustic
  • modern

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18466209/

  • nylon, polyester
  • Gift of Jack Lenor Larsen
  • curves
  • waves
  • psychedelic
  • innovative

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18491681/

  • Designed by Verner Panton
  • Manufactured by Vitra AG
  • injection molded luran s thermoplastic
  • Gift of Robert Blaich
  • interior
  • decoration
  • home
  • curves
  • dining
  • domestic interiors
  • organic
  • seating
  • curvilinear
  • minimalism
  • pop culture
  • sleek
  • stacking
  • plastic
  • balance
  • chair
  • white plastic

Panton’s highly sculptural chair is a unified design: rather than being made of assembled parts, the S-curved body combines seat, back, and legs in a continuous molded form. The design eliminates the need for wood or metal supports. The concave base provides stability and takes advantage of the material’s lightness, while allowing the chair to nestle for stacking.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18498107/

  • lithograph on paper
  • Gift of Milton Glaser
  • landscape
  • graphic design
  • advertising
  • postmodern
  • typewriters
  • surrealism

For decades the firm Olivetti employed cutting-edge graphic designers to create their promotional posters. Milton Glaser conceived of this poster to advertise Mario Bellini’s Lexicon 83DL typewriter. The surrealist image features a sunlike sphere balancing on an index finger in a quiet landscape, evoking the equilibrium of the well-designed typewriter.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18558465/

  • Designed by Dorothy Brodhead
  • screen-printed paper
  • Gift of D. Lorraine Yerkes

The simplistic line drawing of the buffalo and cloud motifs, along with the repetition and staggering of the shapes, illustrates streamlining and accentuates the leaping motion of the buffalo.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18617441/

  • lithograph on paper
  • graphic design
  • upholstery
  • modernism
  • textiles

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18621873/

  • Designed by Mario Bellini
  • abs plastic, melamine, rubber, metal
  • Gift of Barry Friedman and Patricia Pastor
  • rounded
  • offices
  • brightly colored
  • curved
  • tool
  • plastic
  • keyboard
  • calculation
  • mathematicians
  • extrude
  • orange plastic

With the intent to design a piece of “totally humanized” office technology, Bellini attracted a new breed of consumer with the Divisumma 18 calculator’s colorful, tactile form. The stylish design made use of revolutionary synthetics like ABS plastic, melamine resin, and an inviting rubberized skin covering the keyboard buttons. Produced in a bright golden hue, it sat smartly on desks as a reminder of the sense of play that design could bring to even the most formal environments.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18621877/

  • Designed by Charles Eames
  • Manufactured by Evans Products Company
  • laminated and molded birch wood
  • Gift of Barry Friedman and Patricia Pastor
  • personal
  • curving form
  • military
  • curved
  • tool
  • contour
  • wood
  • health-care
  • cut-out
  • voids
  • bent
  • smooth
  • prosthetic
  • medical
  • plywood
  • legs

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18634005/

  • machine-printed paper
  • Gift of Cincinnati Art Museum
  • flowers
  • repetition
  • stylized
  • pastel

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18636035/

  • Designed by Gae Aulenti
  • linen
  • GIft of George and Louise Beylerian
  • circles
  • concentric
  • bullseye
  • primary colors

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18636355/

  • Designed by Henry Dreyfuss
  • Manufactured by American Thermos Bottle Co.
  • aluminum, bakelite, glass
  • Gift of Paul F. Walter
  • container
  • drinking
  • vessels
  • revolve
  • carafes
  • modern
  • lids

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18636773/

  • Manufactured by Chase Brass & Copper Co.
  • chromium-plated metal, bakelite
  • Gift of Mel Byars
  • streamlined
  • sleek
  • chrome
  • orange plastic
  • entertaing

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18637605/

  • machine-printed paper
  • Gift of Suzanne Lipschutz
  • kitchen
  • fruit
  • All-over
  • roosters
  • cocktail glasses
  • coffee pots
  • pineapples
  • seals
  • chicken
  • coffee

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18648915/

  • Designed by Richard Sapper
  • Manufactured by Brionvega, S.p.A.
  • abs plastic, chrome-plated metal
  • personal
  • communication
  • music
  • brightly colored
  • minimalism
  • compact
  • boxy
  • red plastic

Sapper and Zanuso's portable radio combines a pure, modern aesthetic with a functionality that not only facilitates ease of use, but also protects sensitive electronic elements from inclement weather, or being jostled in transit. The radius corners soften the overall appearance, creating an object that is equally stylish in its open or closed position.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18649825/

  • Designed by Lester Beall
  • offset lithograph and screenprint on paper
  • Museum purchase through gift of Mrs. Edward C. Post and from Friends of Drawings and Prints, General Acquisition Endowment, Sarah Cooper Hewitt, and Smithsonian Institution Collections Acquisition Program Funds
  • food preparation
  • kitchen
  • electricity
  • advertising
  • promotion
  • dots
  • women
  • information
  • propa

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18654145/

  • Designed by Angelo Testa
  • linen
  • Museum purchase from General Acquisitions Endowment Fund
  • domestic interiors
  • drapery
  • commercial interior
  • abstraction
  • repetition
  • rhythm
  • continuous
  • rows
  • linear

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18665465/

  • Designed by Tommi Parzinger
  • silk
  • Gift of Donald Cameron
  • circles
  • scalloped
  • crosses
  • segmented

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18670363/

  • Designed by Tommi Parzinger
  • graphite on white tracing paper
  • Gift of Donald Cameron
  • preparatory
  • dining
  • tableware
  • sleek
  • dishes
  • entertaining

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18677405/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • colored tissue paper mounted on cardboard, graphite
  • Gift of Alexander H. Girard
  • interior decoration
  • pattern
  • repetition
  • geometric
  • fabric
  • mid-century

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18677417/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • tissue paper, colored paper, brush and gouache on white wove paper
  • Gift of Alexander H. Girard
  • artists
  • decoration
  • design
  • decorative
  • brightly colored
  • textile design
  • characters
  • totemic
  • pre-Columbian
  • process

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18677951/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • Manufactured by American Art Textile Printing Company, Inc.
  • 100% cotton
  • Gift of Alexander H. Girard
  • furnishing fabric
  • geometric
  • irregular
  • abstract

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18681945/

  • Designed by Henry Dreyfuss
  • graphite, yellow, red crayon on tracing paper
  • Gift of Industrial Designers Society of America
  • stripes
  • food preparation
  • appliance
  • public
  • clients
  • brightly colored
  • tool
  • eating
  • presentation drawing
  • handle
  • product design

In 1934 industrial designer Henry Dreyfuss was hired by the Washburn Company to redesign its range of kitchen tools. His design drawing and the final results [04] show that objects sometimes regarded as banal could rise to a level of visual distinction. Using a vocabulary of pure, geometric shapes and bright colors Dreyfuss combined functionality and a modern aesthetic to reinvent a category of utilitarian gadgets for the home.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18692967/

  • Designed by Gaetano Pesce
  • Manufactured by Expansion
  • cotton
  • Gift of the Liliane and David M. Stewart Collection
  • rounded
  • upholstery
  • geometric
  • color gradation
  • domestic interior

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18694617/

  • Designed by Peter Behrens
  • Manufactured by S. Frankel
  • cotton
  • Gift of Torsten Bröhan
  • dining
  • geometric
  • radiating
  • symmetrical

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18694619/

  • Designed by Peter Behrens
  • Manufactured by S. Frankel
  • cotton
  • Gift of Torsten Bröhan
  • dining
  • geometric
  • radiating
  • medallion

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18701983/

  • Designed by Timorous Beasties
  • screen print on paper
  • Gift of Timorous Beasties
  • organic
  • curvilinear
  • bold
  • amoeba

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18702673/

  • Designed by Carl Otto Czeschka
  • silk
  • Museum purchase from General Acquisitions Endowment Fund
  • scalloped
  • flowers
  • stylized
  • graphic
  • chevron
  • women's fashion

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18715169/

  • aluminum, steel, rubber
  • Gift of Dennis and Johanna Lo
  • metallic
  • domestic
  • food preparation
  • kitchen
  • streamlined
  • tool
  • sleek
  • angular

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18741243/

  • Designed by Ettore Sottsass
  • graphite, crayon, black marker on white wove paper
  • Gift of Unknown Donor
  • furniture
  • dining
  • interior design
  • multicolored
  • geometric
  • table

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18741247/

  • Designed by Ettore Sottsass
  • graphite and crayon on smooth white wove paper
  • Gift of Unknown Donor
  • circular
  • water
  • tableware
  • industrial design
  • geometric
  • brass
  • stacked
  • vessel

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18741249/

  • Designed by Ettore Sottsass
  • graphite on white wove paper
  • Gift of Unknown Donor
  • circular
  • coffee/tea drinking
  • industrial design
  • geometric
  • vessel
  • conical

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18790051/

  • Designed by Russel Wright
  • Manufactured by Simtex Mills
  • cotton, viscose rayon
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • dining
  • affordable
  • plaid
  • picnics
  • casual

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18790781/

  • Designed by Raymond Loewy
  • molded phenolic plastic (catalin), metal, fabric
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • communication
  • globular
  • map
  • listening
  • radio

Raymond Loewy's global approach to industrial design is evidence in the form and materials of this radio.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18794731/

  • airbrush and watercolor on wove paper
  • Museum purchase from General Acquisitions Endowment Fund
  • dining
  • modernism
  • metal
  • eating
  • presentation drawing
  • wood
  • cutlery
  • economical

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18794853/

  • aluminum, wood
  • Museum purchase from General Acquisitions Endowment Fund
  • model
  • wood
  • flatware
  • aluminum
  • utensil
  • servingware

As seen in Jonassen’s drawing [01] and prototypes, this flatware design married the functionality of traditional cutlery with Russel Wright’s aesthetic of curved organic forms that embraced a modern sensibility for household items. While the set did not go into production, the prototypes include wood handles to support the geometry of the aluminum parts, showing how the objects would fit easily within Wright’s universe of objects.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18797369/

  • Designed by Apple Industrial Design Team
  • Manufactured by Apple Inc.
  • aluminum, arsenic-free glass, plastic
  • Gift of Apple
  • personal
  • rounded
  • communication
  • entertainment
  • digital
  • touchscreen
  • screen
  • tool
  • flat
  • innovative
  • computing
  • knowledge
  • software
  • toolbox

The sleek light form of this compact, wireless, portable all-in-one digital tablet breaks the bonds of the office. All operations can be performed directly through finger gestures on its touch-sensitive screen anywhere anytime. The iPad does not require an external keyboard; typing can be accomplished simply by summoning any one of a number of functions or apps that include an on-screen keyboard.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18800321/

  • graphite, color pencil on cream tracing paper
  • Museum purchase from Smithsonian Regents Collections Acquisition and Friends of Drawings and Prints Funds
  • furniture
  • domestic interiors
  • presentation drawing
  • wood
  • rectilinear
  • Prairie Style

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18805589/

  • Designed by George J. Sowden
  • screenprint on white wove paper
  • Gift of Nathalie du Pasquier and George J. Sowden
  • furniture
  • pattern
  • domestic interiors
  • black and white
  • geometric
  • postmodern
  • cityscape

George Sowden moved to Italy in the 1970s to work with Ettore Sottsass Jr. and later became a founding member of the Memphis group. This print is one from series of designs for interiors covered in patterns that Sowden developed in collaboration with Nathalie du Pasquier. The interior features his design for the Oberoi armchair. Sowden used digital “clip art” of the city of Brussels to create the urban view from the window.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18805591/

  • Designed by George J. Sowden
  • offset lithograph on paper
  • Gift of Nathalie du Pasquier and George J. Sowden
  • architecture
  • multicolored
  • geometric
  • urban planning
  • colorful
  • modular
  • stacked
  • Memphis
  • Postmodernism

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18805943/

  • brush and gouache on paper
  • pattern
  • curves
  • multicolored
  • geometric
  • organic form
  • splotches
  • fashion
  • Memphis

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/35460795/

  • silicone rubber, led light source
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • personal environmental control
  • brightly colored
  • concave
  • electronics
  • ribbed
  • red plastic

This flashlight's textured soft rubber handle, inspired by a bycicle handle, is comfortable to grasp and hold. The broad conical head directs the illumination from a powerful light-emitting diode (LED) and also serves as a platform that lets the flashlight sit upright when not in use. The Grip is produced in bright red, blue, yellow, and white--easy to find in any setting.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/51497673/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • woven textile upholstery of cotton (46%), wool (33%), and nylon (21%), with vinyl, urethane foam, latex foam; molded plywood (body), cast aluminum (legs)
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II in honor of Caroline Baumann
  • furniture
  • upholstery
  • seating
  • tubular
  • orange
  • chair
  • yellow

Bright and clashing, retro yet futuristic—this chair embodies the flamboyance of pop art. Like the movement that inspired it, the chair presents a challenge to the traditions of fine arts by incorporating imagery from popular culture, in this case exaggerated armrests, which recall the wings of an airplane— appropriately, as it was designed for Braniff Airways.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/52027745/

  • Designed by Peter Behrens
  • cast pewter and planed walnut
  • Gift of Gerald G. Stiebel and Penelope Hunter-Stiebel
  • organic
  • tableware
  • metalwork
  • Jugendstil
  • pewter
  • Germany
  • tray

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68243957/

  • Designed by Ilonka Karasz
  • electro-plated nickel silver
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • tableware
  • silver
  • geometric
  • metalwork
  • serving
  • serving ware

After studying in Budapest, Karasz arrived in the United States in 1913, where a little over ten years later she began to establish herself as an influential designer in a variety of media. Although her designs show multiple references to her European past, they also display a combination of modern ideas associated with her new home. In this silver-plated sugar bowl and creamer, she developed the idea of using one form and adapting it with additional elements and parts. The use of silver-plated nickel—instead of expensive solid silver—and the pure geometric shapes that imply industrial production, made these serving pieces easy to clean and maintain.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68243959/

  • Designed by Ilonka Karasz
  • electro-plated nickel silver
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • tableware
  • silver
  • geometric
  • metalwork
  • serving
  • serving ware

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68250499/

  • Manufactured by Cassina S.p.A
  • turned, planed and joined ash, twill-woven cane
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • interior decoration
  • furniture
  • seating
  • chairs
  • wood
  • playful
  • angular
  • plain
  • chair
  • cane

Ponti strove for years to create the lightest possible chair that could be manufactured with the craft and distinction of the best Italian manufacturers. The Superleggera is the culmination of that effort—planed ash, shaped into slender triangular legs that are expertly joined, with a hand-woven cane seat. .

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68268053/

  • Designed by Norman Bel Geddes
  • Manufactured by Emerson Radio and Phonograph Corp.
  • cast phenolic resin (opalon), molded urea plastic, molded cellulose acetate, embossed acetate, metal
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • communication
  • music
  • electronic
  • decorative
  • information
  • brightly colored
  • radios
  • rectangular
  • geometric
  • portable
  • colorful
  • plastic
  • music lovers
  • patriotic
  • blue plastic
  • ractangular

Bel Geddes's most iconic radio design speaks to American faith in technology and industry even as the threat of World War II loomed large. Its color palette, made possible by the use of Catalin, and rectangular shape allude to the American flag with horizontal banding standing in for broad stripes and spangled knobs serving as bright stars.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68731001/

  • Designed by Eliot Noyes
  • Manufactured by International Business Machines Corp. (IBM)
  • aluminum, steel, molded plastic
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • performance
  • utility
  • tool
  • industrial design
  • standardization
  • plastic
  • office
  • corporate interior
  • office workers
  • aluminum

The Selectric I changed the very nature of typewriter design. Its success was the result of a revolutionary typing ball that eliminated both the carriage return and keystroke mechanism that were the basis of a typewriter’s function, allowing for profiles that were lower, sleeker, and more reflective of a modern aesthetic.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68731007/

  • Manufactured by Revere Copper and Brass Company
  • bent and joined chromium-plated sheet brass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • streamlined
  • commemorative
  • ships
  • silhouette
  • metalwork
  • nautical
  • pouring
  • brass
  • speed
  • serving ware

One of Müller-Munk’s most prominent designs, the teardrop-shaped Normandie pitcher is distinguished by its streamlined elegance. It takes its name and shape from the SS Normandie—a French cruise ship that embarked on its first transatlantic voyage in 1935—the same year the pitcher was introduced. The pitcher is made of a single sheet of chromium-plated brass that is bent, bringing the slightly upswept ends together, then finished with a thin border of metal to create a very efficient spout.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68731017/

  • Designed by Walter Dorwin Teague
  • Manufactured by Eastman Kodak Company
  • molded bakelite, metal, glass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • streamlined
  • electronic
  • hobbyists
  • industrial design
  • portable
  • plastic
  • photography
  • bakelite
  • packaging
  • camera

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68790741/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • silk
  • drapery
  • black and white
  • curving line
  • typography
  • calligraphy

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68813995/

  • Designed by Dieter Rams
  • Manufactured by Braun AG
  • aluminum, molded plastic
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • smoking
  • appliance
  • monochrome
  • metal
  • tool
  • cigarettes
  • aluminum
  • cylindrical
  • lighter
  • minimal

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68814001/

  • Designed by Yves Béhar
  • injection molded abs plastic and polycarbonate, printed rubber, liquid crystal display, electronic components; steel, copper wire (power plug)
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • green
  • electronic
  • plastic
  • computer

OLPC's XO Computer empowers children in underdeveloped areas to connect with one another and the global community to learn, play, and engage. The low-cost computer is bright, durable, and efficient, serving as a portable classroom where students can study and play individually or collaboratively using conscientiously designed content and software.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68814003/

  • Designed by Russel Wright
  • stamped and pierced chromium-plated steel, molded bakelite
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • kitchen
  • tableware
  • tool
  • steel
  • metalwork
  • astronomy

Designed by architects and an artist, the geometric forms of these salt and pepper shakers show American modernism’s affinity for simplicity. During the 1930s the emergence of aluminum and stainless steel tableware coincided with the rise of modernist designs for everyday objects. The use of these metals for tableware offered Depression-era consumers a cost-efficient alternative to silver at the dining room table. No-tarnish aluminum and stainless steel were labor saving compared to silver. The cost efficiency of the use of these metals is disguised by the fashionability of machine-age modernism on the table.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68814017/

  • chromium-plated brass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • cutlery
  • metalwork
  • brass
  • speed
  • serving ware
  • knife

This cheese knife embodies the aerodynamic, streamlined style so prevalent in the 1930s. The horizontal lines, curved shapes, and feeling of movement that can be found in objects as diverse as Raymond Loewy’s S1 Locomotive or Walter Dorwin Teague’s desk lamp are equally present in this tabletop accessory.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/68814019/

  • Designed by Walter Dorwin Teague
  • Manufactured by Polaroid Corporation
  • aluminum, molded bakelite, laminated cellulose film
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • streamlined
  • offices
  • industrial design
  • desks
  • bakelite
  • working
  • brown
  • trapezoidal

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404576133/

  • molded glass, brass, molded bakelite
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • glass
  • plastic
  • lamp
  • geometry

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734349/

  • Designed by Tommi Parzinger
  • cast brass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • circular
  • geometric
  • brass
  • tray
  • serving ware

Tommi Parzinger, who designed this tray, wore many hats: graphic designer, poster artist, metalworker, furniture designer, lighting designer, and ceramist. During the 1920s and early 1930s, he was a member of the Deutscher Werkbund and the Bund Deutscher Gebrauchsgraphiker, but he came to the United States in 1932, settling in New York in 1935. This circular tray adds to other objects by Parzinger in Cooper Hewitt’s collection, such as a design for a chafing dish (1998-19-95), and a textile (1998-19-2). Together, these works in various materials and techniques provide some insight into Parzinger’s design process and demonstrate his use of simple, geometric lines to great effect.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734351/

  • brass, glass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • geometric
  • writing
  • brass
  • inkwell
  • pen

Simple geometric forms are predominant in Hoffmann’s early 20th-century metalwork designs. This reduction of form and ornament led him and others at the Wiener Werkstätte to develop a new geometric and abstract style for domestic objects.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734371/

  • Designed by Russel Wright
  • spun aluminum, wood
  • geometric
  • aluminum
  • spherical
  • entertaining
  • serving ware
  • barware

Russel Wright’s punch set made a strong visual statement while its design also offered practical assets for the hostess; aluminum was lightweight and the punch bowl’s wooden ball handles double as stabilizers to hold a ring-shaped tray of cups.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734375/

  • Designed by Max Bill
  • molded and glazed earthenware, glass, chrome-plated metal, painted metal, molded plastic
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • kitchen
  • tool
  • plastic
  • clock
  • chrome
  • timer

The inverted teardrop-shaped housing of this time-keeping device for the kitchen accommodates a large clock face in the top, while its frame tapers down to house the smaller kitchen timer below. Devoid of ornament, it emphasizes clean-lined, easily read graphics through the designer's strict adherence to pure form and function.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734377/

  • molded and glazed stoneware
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • Jugendstil
  • ceramic
  • cobalt
  • pitcher
  • serving ware
  • jug

Beginning in the 1880s there was a revival of interest in native traditional crafts, including stoneware in Germany. Although makers revived traditional production methods, they infused their works with a contemporary energy and aesthetic. This piece thus combines ancient techniques with a German art nouveau, or Jugendstil (“youth style”), motif, characterized by the bulbous volume and undulating, abstracted vegetal decoration.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734379/

  • spun aluminum, enameled aluminum, stainless steel rods, cork
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • geometric
  • aluminum
  • lamp
  • cork
  • domestic interior

Balancing aluminum discs and rods, the T-3-C table lamp echoes the primary visual motif of the Atomic Age: the particles and bonds of an atom. Designed for a 1951 lighting competition at the Museum of Modern Art, the T-3-C table lamp won third prize and is now an icon of 1950s lighting design.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734417/

  • Designed by John Vassos
  • Manufactured by Radio Corporation of America
  • aluminum, chromium-plated steel, various metals, molded plastic, felt, leather, velvet
  • music
  • electronic
  • red
  • chrome
  • phonograph
  • record player

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734421/

  • polished aluminum, molded polyurethane foam covered in neoprene
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • seating
  • rubber
  • chair
  • chrome

The amorphic shape of Newson's Embryo chair is a postmodern rendition of the natural forms and shapes used by designers during the mid-20th century. Newson's futuristic vision of design has no boundaries, as he has designed everything from chairs to aircraft interiors to backpacks.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734423/

  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • polished plate-glass, stained birch
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • table
  • wood
  • glass
  • domestic interior

Looking to nature for its sculptural form, Noguchi's furniture designs reflect his longstanding interest in garden and landscape design. As he was both a designer and sculptor, his abstract naturalistic forms obscure the boundary between art and design.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734425/

  • Manufactured by Knoll Textiles
  • birch, chrome-plated steel rods
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • seating
  • wood
  • chrome
  • stool

Noguchi uses the structural integrity of steel rods to create a matrix of connections between a flat, round birch seat and a base. The larger seat may appear to create a top-heavy impression, but is in fact in perfect balance with the smaller base, due to the alignment of the rods connecting the two pieces.

This object is currently on display in room 105 in Carnegie Mansion.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734427/

  • cast and silver-plated metal
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • silver
  • Jugendstil
  • metalwork

The Osiris vase bridges the gap between Behrens’s earlier Jugendstil period and the industrial aesthetic he cultivated through the Deutscher Werkbund, or German Association of Craftsmen, which he co-founded in 1907. The irregular lip and undulating, pyramidal base possess an organic quality but the purity of form and gridded decoration connote a shift towards the austere functionalism of Behrens’s later designs.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734429/

  • cast and silver-plated metal
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • silver
  • metalwork
  • Jugendstil

The Osiris vase bridges the gap between Behrens’s earlier Jugendstil period and the industrial aesthetic he cultivated through the Deutscher Werkbund, or German Association of Craftsmen, which he co-founded in 1907. The irregular lip and undulating, pyramidal base possess an organic quality but the purity of form and gridded decoration connote a shift towards the austere functionalism of Behrens’s later designs.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734431/

  • molded and glazed porcelain with silver overlay
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • ceramics
  • silver
  • geometric
  • serving ware

Sika’s strategically placed signature circular motifs accentuate the form of this sugar bowl as it swells outward at the top and contracts towards its base. Her use of bright silver on a deep blue ground takes highlights the stark curving shapes.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734433/

  • turned aluminum, brass, molded bakelite
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • industrial design
  • geometric
  • lamp
  • domestic interior

Resembling an engine piston, this table lamp by Walter von Nessen shows the influence of machine geometries on the design of domestic objects in the 1930s. Unevenly graduated segments in alternating bands of aluminum and brass give the lamp’s body a sense of visual rhythm. Precisely stacked circular discs represent an experiment in diffusing light.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734439/

  • Designed by Shiro Kuramata
  • assembled laminated plate glass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • seating
  • glass
  • planar

Utilizing a newly developed adhesive, Kuramata achieved material and visual minimalism with this armchair. Flat planes of glass are bonded together along their edges, without mounts or screws, to create a functional chair that seems simultaneously visible and invisible. The transparent form invites users to question notions of materiality, utility, and comfort.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734441/

  • Designed by George Nelson and Associates
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • combed oak, lacquered wood, glass, molded plastic, aluminum, linen
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • storage
  • television
  • modular
  • living room
  • domestic interior
  • stereo

Designed to blend into a modern home interior, the Model 4743 stereo cabinet transforms bulky heavy television and audio units into a sleek rectilinear piece of furniture. Its geometric design reflects Nelson's focus on rationality and simplicity in domestic design.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734445/

  • raised and cast silver
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • tableware
  • metal
  • reflective
  • cylindrical

This handmade pitcher represents the mix of abstracted geometries and cutout shapes that informed some of Memphis's designs as well as some of the postmodern architecture of the era, including Scarpa's later work. As design for silver was rare in the late 20th century, except in jewelry, this pitcher breathed new life into silver for the contemporary market.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734447/

  • Designed by Norman Bel Geddes
  • Manufactured by Revere Copper and Brass Company
  • chrome-plated brass
  • geometric
  • brass
  • chrome
  • barware

Designed five years after the repeal of Prohibition, Geddes’s Manhattan cocktail service bears witness to the home bar’s rise in popularity during the late 1930s. Additionally, its elongated and stepped form reflects the influence of the new urban skyline, as American designers adapted the skyscraper silhouette for product design.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734449/

  • molded, glazed and enameled earthenware
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • ceramics
  • red
  • geometric
  • triangular
  • ceramic
  • conical
  • Memphis
  • teapot

The form, colors, and pattern of this teapot designed in 1981--the year of Memphis's founding--exemplify the group's aim to offer creative perspectives on everyday objects. While the teapot's appearance is decidedly contemporary, its pattern name, Nefertiti, links it to the ancient past conjuring up associations between the teapot's triangles and the form of a pyramid. The surface is covered in a dense pattern resembling 1950s laminate, a characteristic motif of Memphis design.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734451/

  • Designed by Charles Sheeler
  • Manufactured by Revere Copper and Brass Company
  • polished and pierced aluminum
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • tableware
  • geometric
  • metalwork
  • shaker
  • aluminum
  • serving ware

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734453/

  • Designed by Charles Sheeler
  • Manufactured by Revere Copper and Brass Company
  • polished and pierced aluminum
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • tableware
  • geometric
  • metalwork
  • shaker
  • aluminum
  • serving ware

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734457/

  • laser-cut, assembled and laminated plywood
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • seating
  • wood
  • irregular

The undulating form of Mathias Bengtsson’s plywood Slice chair was inspired by cutting-edge technology and organic forms found in nature. Bengtsson initiated the design in 1999 and originally executed it in clay. He then used a computer to analyze the shape and precision-cut hundreds of plywood slices, each a unique shape and just a few millimeters thick, which he stacked and laminated to form the sculptural chair. The result is a contemporary take on furniture made from a traditional material, combining high-tech manufacturing methods and handcrafting.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734459/

  • Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright
  • formed, stamped and patinated sheet copper on pine
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • geometric
  • table
  • angular
  • copper

"The skyscraper now belongs in small communities rather than in the huge cities," said Frank Lloyd Wright in 1956 on the occasion of the building of his tallest project, the 19-story Price Tower in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. These two tables and stool were components of Wright's holistic design that combined offices with eight duplex apartments. The furniture's cantilevers and rigid geometries of triangles and rectangles mirror the building's complex engineering. Metal accents tie this furniture for the interiors to the building's exterior infrastructure of a copper spire, fins, and louvers, as well as aluminum exterior doors and window trim.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734461/

  • Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright
  • copper, woven textile
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • upholstery
  • striped
  • copper
  • stool

"The skyscraper now belongs in small communities rather than in the huge cities," said Frank Lloyd Wright in 1956 on the occasion of the building of his tallest project, the 19-story Price Tower in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. These two tables and stool were components of Wright's holistic design that combined offices with eight duplex apartments. The furniture's cantilevers and rigid geometries of triangles and rectangles mirror the building's complex engineering. Metal accents tie this furniture for the interiors to the building's exterior infrastructure of a copper spire, fins, and louvers, as well as aluminum exterior doors and window trim.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734465/

  • Designed by Walter Gropius
  • Manufactured by S.A. Loevy
  • nickel-plated brass mounted on painted wood
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • geometric
  • metalwork
  • hardware
  • brass

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734471/

  • dyed leather, aluminum, cut and sheet-molded plastic
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • seating
  • plastic
  • chair
  • black

Combining functionalism with his attention to detail, Jacobsen consistently used organic forms in his furniture designs. The Swan chair's elegant silhouette demonstrates his ability to translate naturalist forms into sophisticated functional objects.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734483/

  • Manufactured by Unknown
  • cast aluminum
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • geometric
  • metalwork
  • cigarettes
  • aluminum
  • skyscraper

In 1931, the Empire State Building surpassed the Eiffel Tower as the tallest building in the world. Its towering form and the rise of the New York City skyline around it had a wide-ranging influence across contemporary art and design production. This aluminum cigarette lighter shows how the skyscraper style reached beyond the sophisticated up-market buyer to middle- and lower-market consumers as well. Smoking and its accessories were fashionably associated with the modernity of the city of which this lighter’s architectural form is a symbol.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734485/

  • Designed by Ettore Sottsass
  • blown glass, sheet glass, brass wire
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • geometric
  • colorful
  • bowl
  • glassware

One of the leading practitioners of the Memphis movement, Sottsass assembled separate opaque and transparent glass elements of hard and soft shapes to create a signature object in the Memphis style. Rectilinear and curved components that may appear unrelated to one another are juxtaposed in exquisite balance to create a new, unique form. This piece's formal arrangement suggests a three-dimensional collage.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734487/

  • oak (frame), woven oak strips
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • seating
  • woven
  • wood
  • domestic interior

This chaise longue is a product of the friendship between architect, Edward Durell Stone and senator of Arkansas, J. William Fulbright. The senator invited the architect to design furniture that took advantage of the resources at Fulbright's declining family-owned wagon and tool manufactory. Stone's designs achieved a modern aesthetic with the use of regional materials. The organic nature of this elegant chaise is reinforced by the use of the natural materials of oak and raffia.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734489/

  • Designed by Gilbert Rohde
  • bent chrome-plated tubular brass, enameled brass, plate glass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • tubular
  • metalwork
  • clock
  • asymmetrical

Rohde began designing clocks for Herman Miller after creating a distinctive line of clocks for the company for the 1933 Chicago World’s Fair. Glass and chrome—two materials typically reserved for furniture—are used here creating an eye-catching tabletop accessory. The outline of the clock shows reductive rigor and an angularity that celebrates the cantilever, frame, and suspension principles that tubular steel made possible.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734493/

  • Designed by Charles Eames
  • Manufactured by Emerson Radio and Phonograph Corp.
  • bent wood, molded plastic
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • electronic
  • wood
  • plastic
  • radio

Husband and wife design team Charles and Ray Eames began experimenting with the three-dimensional molding of plywood in about 1940. A splint developed for wartime use and their early chairs are among their most recognized molded plywood forms, but the pair also experimented with industrial design products. This prototype radio enclosure and Emerson radio show the organic curves their molding process was capable of producing in this thin yet strong material.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/404734495/

  • Designed by Russel Wright
  • spun aluminum
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • geometric
  • metalwork
  • vase
  • aluminum
  • skscraper

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556859/

  • spun aluminum, anodized aluminum, vinyl
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • seating
  • metal
  • tubular

McArthur was one of the first industrial designers to patent aluminum furniture designs in the early 1930s. Innovative for his use of aluminum, McArthur’s perfection of the anodic process—electroplating metal to resist erosion and abrasion while providing a decorative finish— and methods for metal joinery also made his furniture quite durable.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556865/

  • Designed by Pier Giacomo Castiglioni
  • molded bakelite, metal
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • electronic
  • red
  • plastic
  • radio

A round speaker and indicator dial rise diagonally from a rectangular base to create a radio that defies normal convention and echoes the pure, modernist lines that had entered the visual vocabulary for electronic items during this time period. The speaker points upward to confirm its ability to amplify and broadcast sound.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556867/

  • Designed by Charles Eames
  • molded and spliced plywood, turned and veneered honduran mahogany, foam rubber, woven textile (upholstery)
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • upholstery
  • seating
  • chair
  • molded
  • domestic interior

This chair, developed for The Museum of Modern Art’s 1940 Organic Design Competition, is reflective of the more relaxed form of modernism that became prevalent after World War II. The upholstered seat and back are formed from one piece of plywood molded in three dimensions, an extremely difficult technical feat. The gentle, compound-curved shape sits comfortably on its well-proportioned legs, creating a feeling of both comfort and style.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556871/

  • Designed by Charles Eames
  • Manufactured by Evans Products Company
  • bent walnut plywood with lacquered details
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • electronic
  • wood
  • prototype
  • radio

Husband and wife design team Charles and Ray Eames began experimenting with the three-dimensional molding of plywood in about 1940. A splint developed for wartime use and their early chairs are among their most recognized molded plywood forms, but the pair also experimented with industrial design products. This prototype radio enclosure and Emerson radio show the organic curves their molding process was capable of producing in this thin yet strong material.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556873/

  • Designed by George Nelson and Associates
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • walnut veneer on pine, tubular steel, leather, perforated sheet aluminum
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • wood
  • modular
  • desk

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556875/

  • Designed by Gilbert Rohde
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • east indian laurel, sequoia burl, oak, acrylic, brass, patinated steel, leather, plate glass, mirrored glass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • curved
  • geometric
  • bedroom
  • vanity

Vanities express the glamour of the 1930s boudoir. A woman sitting at her vanity—preparing to go out or to entertain in her home—connotes the vanity’s cultural associations with beauty, self-image, and preparation. The large circular mirrors and clean, curved geometric form of Rohde’s vanity maintain the femininity of the object but in modern terms.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556879/

  • Designed by Tapio Wirkkala
  • laminated birch and teak plywood
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • organic
  • concentric
  • woodwork
  • dish

In the late 1940s Tappio Wirkkala began working with plywood—a material he used to recreate natural forms and rhythms. This dish is an example of the boundary that Wirkkala negotiated between sculpture and decorative arts. The dish's rounded organic shape uses the grain in the concentric circles of plywood to represent the veins of the leaf.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556893/

  • Designed by Paul Schreckengost
  • Manufactured by Gem Clay Forming Company
  • molded and glazed earthenware trimmed in platinum
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • ceramics
  • streamlined
  • geometric
  • ceramic
  • streamline
  • serving ware
  • teapot

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556895/

  • cast aluminum, steel, brass, molded rubber
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • appliance
  • teardrop
  • chrome
  • aluminum

Approximately 120,000 outboard motors were made by the Kissel Motor Company between 1936 and 1944, under the brand Waterwitch Outboards. Kissel brought the same sleek, aerodynamic aesthetic to the design of these boat motors as it had to its cars, which it produced until 1930.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556897/

  • Designed by Alvar Aalto
  • enameled aluminum, pierced brass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • aluminum
  • white
  • beehive
  • hanging lamp

Aalto viewed lighting as one of many integrated components that could transform people’s surroundings. Many of Aalto's lamps were initially designed for specific building projects, but were then put into serial production. The A331 hanging lamp is one of these; Aalto originally designed it in 1953, as part of the furnishings program for his buildings for the University of Jyväskylä in Jyväskylä, Finland. The lamp was, and still is, marketed by Artek—a company co-founded by Aalto to sell his designs—and has been one of the firm’s most popular lighting fixtures.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556903/

  • Designed by Massimo Vignelli
  • Manufactured by Venini Glassworks
  • blown and cased glass (inciso), silver-plated brass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • green
  • silver
  • spherical
  • glassware

The pitcher's gleaming silver-plated cylindrical neck and curved handle, along with its spherical glass body--lightly textured in the inciso technique--presents a study in geometry, contour, and reflected and refracted light. Vignelli originally conceived of the design during a fellowship at the Amerian firm, Towle Silversmiths, where he learned about silver craftsmanship and how much, like glass, the material reflects light when polished. While Vignelli favored clear, reductive design and was not a proponent of the Memphis anti-modernist philosophy, this pitcher's form and proportions harmonize well with the movement's designs.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556907/

  • Designed by Marco Zanuso
  • Manufactured by Brionvega, S.p.A.
  • molded plastic, perspex, chromium-plated metal
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • electronic
  • plastic
  • television
  • molded

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556909/

  • Designed by Marco Zanuso
  • Manufactured by Brionvega, S.p.A.
  • acrylic, metal, plastic
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • appliance
  • entertainment
  • rectangular
  • black
  • household

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556911/

  • Designed by Ettore Sottsass
  • cast pewter, murano glass
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • circular
  • red
  • metal
  • glassware

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556913/

  • Designed by Alvar Aalto
  • birchwood, plywood with white paint, wicker, ceramic tile
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • wood
  • modular
  • tea
  • cart

In this tea cart, architect-designer Alvar Aalto brings together a variety of materials and forms to create a harmonious object that is both functional and representative of the best of modernist design. The spare form is pared down to its essential elements—a curvilinear bentwood frame that supports a square top lined with tiles. Oversized white wheels at the base provide a stark, curved counterpoint to the horizontal planes of the top.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556915/

  • tubular steel frame, rubber belts, foam rubber, nylon-jersey covering
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • upholstery
  • seating
  • orange

With its curvilinear form, the Tongue Chair demonstrates the innovative construction methods and synthetics that allowed Paulin to make highly sculptural upholstered furniture in the early 1960s. His forms foretell those of plastic furniture in the latter half of the decade.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556917/

  • Designed by Achille Castiglioni
  • Manufactured by Brionvega, S.p.A.
  • chipboard, plastic laminate, perspex, aluminum
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furniture
  • music
  • geometric
  • white
  • electric

Castiglioni creates a striking, modular stereo system that is based on the pure geometry of a perfect cube and can be combined in multiple configurations. The wheeled base provides an element of portability, while the graphic patterns of the speaker grilles and sound controls provide a bold, modern visual statement.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556921/

  • Designed by Timo Sarpaneva
  • enameled cast iron, teak
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • kitchen
  • utility
  • cooking
  • vibrant

Sarpaneva was inspired by his grandfather's work as a blacksmith to create a modern take on the traditional form of the cast iron cooking pot. This casserole offered not only a cheerful note to the kitchen but several practical advantages. The enamled metal form could transfer easily from oven to table or to storage in the refrigerator. The wooden handle could hook under a notch in the lid to lift it, protecting the user's hand from the heat of the metal.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556935/

  • Designed by Olafur Eliasson
  • Manufactured by Little Sun
  • molded plastic, solar panel, led
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • sun
  • plastic
  • solar
  • yellow

This device's name, design, and function harmoniously capture artificial sunshine. Additionally, the Little Sun is the icon of the manufacturer''s mission to provide solar-powered lighting to off-grid communities throughout the world.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556937/

  • Designed by Kawagoe Yoshinobu Nameki
  • Manufactured by Sony Corporation
  • cast aluminum, glass, chrome-plated metal, molded plastic
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • appliance
  • entertainment
  • portable
  • gray

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556947/

  • Designed by William E. Lescaze
  • Manufactured by Revere Copper and Brass Company
  • rolled and pierced stainless steel
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556949/

  • Designed by William E. Lescaze
  • Manufactured by Revere Copper and Brass Company
  • rolled and pierced stainless steel
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556967/

  • Designed by Mario Bellini
  • molded abs polymer, metal
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • tool
  • writing
  • portable
  • plastic

Bellini engaged the user on both practical and visual levels with the ETP 55 typewriter, Olivetti’s contender in the new market for personal word processors and computers. The miniaturized electronic typing mechanism allowed the designer to reduce the form to a low, stepped, wedge-shaped profile. The lightweight multicolored plastic housing suggested that it was an efficient and user-friendly tool for work.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556983/

  • pen and ink, colored pencil on tracing paper
  • curving form
  • home
  • geometric
  • organic form
  • mid-century
  • architectural dawing

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556985/

  • colored pencil on black cardstock
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • streamlined
  • dining
  • industrial design
  • glass
  • mid-century
  • design drawing

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556987/

  • printed paper
  • Smithsonian Libraries. Gift of George R. Kravis II

Industrial designer, Russel Wright developed a line of popular “American Modern” dinnerware that was manufactured by Steubenville Pottery Company between 1939 and 1959. This color brochure, with the accompanying price and order form, provides information on plates, bowls, casseroles, pitchers, and other mass produced, affordable, and colorful items designed by Wright for modern yet fashionable everyday dining.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556989/

  • pen and ink, brush and gouache, collage on paper
  • interior
  • furniture
  • presentation drawing
  • domestic interior

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556991/

  • gouache, ink, collage on paper
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • sleek
  • collage
  • mid-century
  • furniture design
  • living room
  • domestic interior

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556993/

  • offset lithograph on paper
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • transportation
  • labor
  • promotional poster
  • England
  • post office
  • train

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420556999/

  • Designed by Edward McKnight Kauffer
  • offset lithograph on paper
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • advertising
  • stylized
  • exhibition poster
  • museum
  • figure
  • archery

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557001/

  • offset lithograph on paper
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • labor
  • propaganda
  • hand
  • industry
  • tools
  • diagonal
  • World War II

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557003/

  • offset lithograph on paper
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • military
  • propaganda
  • photomontage
  • battleships
  • World War II
  • patiotism

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557231/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • silk
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • curtain
  • squares
  • geometric
  • colorful
  • domestic interior

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557233/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • linen
  • furnishing fabric
  • triangles
  • geometric

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557245/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • cotton
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • stripes
  • furnishing fabric
  • domestic interior

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557253/

  • silver, walnut
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • organic
  • silver
  • wood
  • metalwork
  • serving ware

Koppel, trained as a sculptor and designer, began working for the Jensen firm in 1945. His fluid designs for hollowware (vessel forms) bolstered the firm as a leader in Scandinavian modern design. A 1950’s advertisement for Jensen, picturing some of Koppel’s curvaceous pieces, featured the headline “The old name . . . the new design.”

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557255/

  • cotton
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • sun
  • geometric
  • stars
  • radiating
  • moon
  • primary colors
  • spoked

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557259/

  • Designed by Henry Dreyfuss
  • chrome-plated steel, steel wire, painted wood

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557261/

  • molded and glazed earthenware
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • ceramics
  • tableware
  • triangular
  • conical
  • dinnerware

Bringing the triangle to the dinner table was a feat for 1930s American dinnerware, since many coinciding modernist designs used more conventional shapes. The Tricorne shape was patented in 1935 and was used for both the saucers and plates for Salem China's Streamline pattern.

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557263/

  • molded methacrylate, plastic and acrylic
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • lighting
  • tubular
  • colorful
  • plastic
  • lamp

Italy’s anti-design movement of the mid-1960s and 1970s is fully expressed in the tongue-in-cheek spirit of the Pillola lamps. Challenging notions of “good design,” the anti-design movement took its visual cues from pop art’s use of bold colors and banal subject matter. Conceived of as a group, the lamps look like outsized pills poured from a giant medicine bottle

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557273/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • linen
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • triangles
  • geometric
  • rain
  • sliver

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557281/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • cotton
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furnishing fabric
  • geometric
  • totemic
  • collage
  • folk art

Energizing the Everyday: Gifts From the George R. Kravis II Collection

https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/420557287/

  • Designed by Alexander Hayden Girard
  • Manufactured by Herman Miller Furniture Company
  • cotton, wool, viscose rayon
  • Gift of George R. Kravis II
  • furnishing fabric
  • geometric
  • cityscape
  • abstract
  • domestic interior