Object Timeline

-0001

1926

  • Work on this object began.

1931

  • Work on this object ended.

2007

  • We acquired this object.

2014

2016

2019

  • You found it!

Sidewall (France), 1926–31

This is a Sidewall. It is dated 1926–31 and we acquired it in 2007. Its medium is machine printed on paper. It is a part of the Wallcoverings department.

This art deco paper was designed by Robert Duflos, an artist of French origin known for his figural and still life paintings. The design is bold, brightly colored, and representative of the period. The paper was produced in two runs, in 1926–27 and again in 1930–31. The original drawing for the design is in the Bibliothèque Forney in Paris.
The ground color is a very dense opaque pigment and is the first color applied, covering the paper from selvedge to selvedge. Applying the ground color is a separate process from printing the design colors and requires a separate printing machine. When the design is printed, all of the colors are applied in one pass through the printing press. The ground color serves the important function of giving the paper a uniform color. As the paper ages and oxidizes, the ground hides the fact that the once white paper is turning brown; this greatly extends the life of the wallpaper. Ground color became especially important after the introduction of wood pulp papers in the 1850s. Papers with ground color were printed on a slightly heavier paper stock and would have been more expensive to produce.
This paper is part of a larger group of rolls of papers under consideration for acquisition that would be a wonderful addition to the collection in both style and size. In 2001, we acquired a group of French art deco wallpaper sample book pages (ca. 1930) produced by the Isidore Leroy Company. Good examples of art deco papers are an area of top collection priority.

It is credited Museum purchase from General Acquisitions Endowment Fund.

Its dimensions are

Overall: 238.8 x 50 cm (7 ft. 10 in. x 19 11/16 in.)

Cite this object as

Sidewall (France), 1926–31; machine printed on paper; Overall: 238.8 x 50 cm (7 ft. 10 in. x 19 11/16 in.); Museum purchase from General Acquisitions Endowment Fund; 2007-1-2

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18706529/ |title=Sidewall (France), 1926–31 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=19 September 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>