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Object Timeline

-0001

1995

  • Work on this object began.

1996

  • Work on this object ended.

2009

  • We acquired this object.

2014

2015

2021

  • You found it!

Eros Knife Prototype

This is a Knife prototype. It was designed by Gerald Gulotta. It is dated designed 1995 and we acquired it in 2009. Its medium is plastic. It is a part of the Product Design and Decorative Arts department.

This prototype was designed by the American industrial designer and teacher, Gerald Gulotta. His work is recognized for its simplicity juxtaposed with sophistication, resulting in objects that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. Gulotta designed glass, ceramics, cutlery, and other tabletop objects from the mid-20th through the early 21st century, producing wares for an international roster of manufacturers in the United States, Europe, and Asia.
Gulotta studied industrial design under Eva Zeisel at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. Upon graduation in 1950, he began working for established industrial designers like Zeisel, Raymond Loewy, and George Nelson. Gulotta returned to Pratt as a teacher, inheriting Zeisel’s ceramics class in 1955; he continued to teach at Pratt for more than 25 years while also maintaining his own design practice. Gulotta was additionally active in international design education. He organized and directed the Industrial Design Workshop ‘74 in Portugal and designed the first foundation curriculum in industrial design for a new school of design at the University of Guadalajara in Mexico in 1976–77. He was a guest lecturer at several art schools in China in 1982, including the College of Arts and Crafts in the ancient pottery manufacturing center of Jingdezhen.
By the early 1970s, Gulotta’s tableware and glassware designs had risen in popularity and developed a devoted following. During this period he began working with the Block China Corporation; the firm’s Portuguese manufactory opened doors to the European market. Gulotta’s work has been featured in many exhibitions, including the 1960 Smithsonian traveling exhibition, Designed for Silver. Gulotta is also the recipient of numerous awards. He was a finalist in the Concurso Internazionale della Ceramica d’Arte, Faenza, Italy, in 1960; he won the Premio Internacional at the 1971 Concurso de Diseño Industrial de Cerámica y Vidrio in Valencia, Spain; in 1980 he claimed first prize at the International Competition for handmade glass, in Lisbon, Portugal.[1] Gulotta's work is held by major collections in the United States, England, and Australia.
In the 1990s, Gulotta invited several American museums, including Cooper-Hewitt, to visit his studio and select examples of his work. At that time, the museum acquired cutlery patterns, glassware, a suite of his Chromatics tableware, and drawings for ceramics. The objects currently proposed for acquisition were selected by curators invited by Gulotta for another visit, which took place a few days before Gulotta shuttered his practice and retired to New Mexico.
The models and prototypes under consideration are desirable for the way they tell a story of the industrial design process—from concept and modifications to a final version ready for mass production; the clay and resin knife models link to the museum's examples of his 1980 Iona pattern for H.E. Lauffer.
[1] “Premio de diseño de ceramica,” ABC, April 16, 1971, http://hemeroteca.abc.es/nav/Navigate.exe/hemeroteca/madrid/abc/1971/04/16/055.html

This object was donated by Gerald Gulotta. It is credited Gift of Gerald Gulotta.

Cite this object as

Eros Knife Prototype; Designed by Gerald Gulotta (American, 1921 - 2018); plastic; Gift of Gerald Gulotta; 2009-16-3

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18730691/ |title=Eros Knife Prototype |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=28 October 2021 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>