This object is currently on display in room 105 as part of Collection Selects: Wyss Institute. See our image rights statement.


See more objects with the color darkslategrey grey silver dimgrey dimgrey or see all the colors for this object.

Object Timeline

  • We acquired this object.



  • Work on this object began.



Photograph, Spiral Staircase, 1927

This is a Photograph.

This object is not part of the Cooper Hewitt's permanent collection. It was able to spend time at the museum on loan from Smithsonian Libraries as part of the Collection Selects: Wyss Institute and Making Design exhibitions.

It is dated 1927. Its medium is photograph.

Thérèse Bonney was an American photographer and publicist. Born in Syracuse, New York, in 1897, she immigrated to France in 1919. She became one of the first women to graduate from the Sorbonne. Assimilating herself into French society, she founded the first American illustrated press service, in Europe, in 1924. The Bonney Service specialized in design and architecture.
Beginning around 1925, Bonney thoroughly documented the French decorative arts through photography, focusing on the impact of modernism in European design. The spiral staircase image represents her acumen of French modernist architecture in the 1920s–30s. This nautilus-inspired design was incorporated into the Villa Martel, a studio created for twin brothers, Jan and Joël Martel, both of whom were sculptors.
A tireless promoter of modern design, Bonney donated more than 4,000 photographic prints to Cooper Hewitt. Together, the images provide a unique documentation of a design era.

It is credited Courtesy of Smithsonian Libraries.

  • Spun Chair, 2010
  • rotationally molded polyethylene.
  • Gift of Herman Miller, Inc..
  • 2012-18-1

Our curators have highlighted 17 objects that are related to this one. Here are three of them, selected at random:

  • In-Ei Mendori Lamp, 2011
  • recycled pet plastic, die-cast painted aluminum (base), methacrylate, led....
  • Gift of Artemide.
  • 2013-46-1-a/g

Its dimensions are

H x W: 24.2 x 18 cm (9 1/2 x 7 1/16 in.)

In addition to Collection Selects: Wyss Institute, this object was previously on display as part of the exhibition Making Design.

This object may be subject to Copyright or other restrictions.

You are welcome to make fair use of this image under U.S. Copyright law and in compliance with our terms of use. Please note that you are responsible for determining whether your use is fair and for responding to any claims that may arise from your use.

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

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url= |title=Photograph, Spiral Staircase, 1927 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=12 December 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>