Color and Comfort: Swedish Modern Design

17 February–26 May 2019

Exhibition Overview

Color Comfort.jpeg

Victor Emanuel Lindstrand and Orrefors Glasburk, Zebra Vase, 1939. Graal glass; 23.2 cm (9/18 in.). The Cleveland Museum of Art, Dudley P. Allen Fund,1939.676.

Color and Comfort: Swedish Modern Design will present the modern styling of mid-twentieth-century Swedish design, featuring textiles, ceramics, and glass from the CMA’s collection. Iconic work by Josef Frank will be shown together with work by artisans such as Viola Gråsten, sisters Gocken and Lisbet Jobs, Stig Lindberg, Sven Markelius, and Elizabeth Ulrick, in an exhibition featuring themes of Nature and Pattern, Color and Contrast, Nostalgia for the Past, and Finding Modernity.

This dynamic installation will explore the idea of comfort and affordability in the modern Swedish home both before and after the Second World War. The introduction of bold, colorful patterning during the 1920s, the national nostalgia for Swedish cultural heritage during the 1930s, and the sparse lines of abstraction in the 1950s and ’60s will come together to reveal a particularly Swedish sensibility in modern design—one that has often been used to define a broader modern Scandinavian style.

A project developed by graduate students in art history and museum studies at Case Western Reserve University, this exhibition will feature new research into this fascinating world of organic design to delight the eye and define mid-century modern for a new generation.

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