Furniture History and Design
Greene & Greene Furniture
Poems of Wood & Light
Hardcover ISBN: 1440302995
One hundred years ago Charles and Henry Greene developed a new and distinctive architectural and decorative style that blended Arts & Crafts and Asian influences with California sensibility and obsessive attention to detail. That innovative style is instantly recognizable today. "David Mathias, author of this richly personal appreciation of the Greenes…comes to Greene and Greene from the perspective of an amateur woodworker with a fine aesthetic sense. Through his writing we are able to appreciate the Greenes' houses and furnishings almost as if we were hearing from one of their builders. Through stunning and perceptive new photography, the illustrated spaces and furnishings illuminate the genius of the Greenes' designs, material selection and craft, which has caused so many to celebrate and be seduced by their work…Being a woodworker, Mathias also pays due homage to John and Peter Hall, the Swedish brothers who worked closely with the Greenes on their finest houses. Mathias correctly grasps how without the Halls, the Greenes would lack a significant measure of the reputation that they enjoy today. Relatively few writers have focused exclusively on Greene and Greene, and so it is a privilege whenever a talented one such as Mr. Mathias comes along. Be forewarned that through this book his seduction may become yours, too." Edward R. Bosley, James N. Gamble Director The Gamble House, Pasadena School of Architecture, University of Southern
In Plain Sight
Discovering the Furniture of Nathaniel Gould
Hardcover ISBN: 1907804331
In Plain Sight: Discovering the Furniture of Nathaniel Gould is the stunning result of happy accident and indefatigable, dedicated research. In the field of early American furniture made in Massachusetts, Nathaniel Gould has loomed as something of a mystery ? believed to have been prolific, handsomely skilled, and exceptionally enterprising, yet considered elusive because of a scarcity of known works, lack of documentation, and difficulties of attribution. Accident ? the unexpected discovery of Gould’s day books and account book in the collection of the Massachusetts Historical Society ? and analysis ? painstaking and inductive ? have produced an invaluable, multifaceted case study. This book establishes Gould unquestionably as Salem’s leading cabinetmaker before and during the period of the American Revolution. He made substantial and often expensive furniture, including case pieces of bombé form embellished with carving. The number of works that can be attributed to Gould remains small, but the foundation for increasingly assured connoisseurship lies within these pages and Gould’s archival records. The scale of his workshop, his impressively large, diverse clientele, and his successes in Salem’s furniture export trade attest to his achievements as an entrepreneur. However, this book illuminates not only a particular individual, but the Salem/Boston/New England spheres in which Gould operated during a tumultuous time in American history. The scrupulously recorded notations in his ledgers are precious clues to emerging concepts of style and taste, cultural mores, business practices, socio-economic circumstances, and familial histories with local, regional, and national relevance. In Plain Sight presents a choice array of forms confidently assigned to Gould’s shop, and makes accessible the ledgers themselves, meticulously analyzed and interpreted to facilitate present and ongoing scholarship regarding Nathaniel Gould, Salem, early New England furniture, and colonial America.
Modern Design: The Fabulous 50s (schiffer Design Books)
Hardcover ISBN: 9780764316210
This delightful picture book presents a broad selection of fine examples from two exhibitions held in the California Heritage Museum in Santa Monica (of which Smith is executive director). The furniture, ceramics, lamps, clocks, occasional print and textile are organized first by country then by artist. A short biography of each artist is provided. There is a bibliography, but no index. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Now I Sit Me Down
From Klismos to Plastic Chair: A Natural History
Paperback ISBN: 0374537038
Have you ever wondered where rocking chairs came from, or why cheap plastic chairs are suddenly everywhere? In Now I Sit Me Down, the distinguished architect and writer Witold Rybczynski chronicles the history of the chair from the folding stools of pharaonic Egypt to the ubiquitous stackable monobloc chairs of today. He tells the stories of the inventor of the bentwood chair, Michael Thonet, and of the creators of the first molded-plywood chair, Charles and Ray Eames. He reveals the history of chairs to be a social history--of different ways of sitting, of changing manners and attitudes, and of varying tastes. The history of chairs is the history of who we are. We learn how the ancient Chinese switched from sitting on the floor to sitting in a chair, and how the iconic chair of Middle America--the Barcalounger--traces its roots back to the Bauhaus. Rybczynski weaves a rich tapestry that draws on art and design history, personal experience, and historical accounts. And he pairs these stories with his own delightful hand-drawn illustrations: colonial rockers and English cabrioles, languorous chaise longues, and no-nonsense ergonomic task chairs--they're all here. The famous Danish furniture designer Hans Wegner once remarked, "A chair is only finished when someone sits in it." As Rybczynski tells it, the way we choose to sit and what we choose to sit on speak volumes about our values, our tastes, and the things we hold dear.
Carving an American Style
Hardcover ISBN: 0875772099
For more than a century, historians have been searching for the true Samuel McIntire (1757-1811) and have been trying to define his role in shaping the cultural heritage of Salem, Massachusetts. Trained as a carpenter by his father, McIntire taught himself the art of architectural drawing and went on to design scores of public and private buildings in Salem, long celebrated for their elegance and beauty. After 1790, however, he made his living primarily as a wood carver, providing ornamental decoration for many of the buildings he designed as well as for furniture and more than two dozen sailing vessels. McIntire was also called upon to carve portrait busts and even a model of a historic pear, commissions that brought him into the realm of academic sculpture. Samuel McIntire: Carving an American Style is the first book to examine the full range of his carving career and to put it into a broader perspective in terms of the work of his contemporaries and other decorative traditions of the Federal period. The book draws on the remarkable collections of the Peabody Essex Museum, in Salem, Massachusetts, which owns most of McIntire's architectural drawings and several of his most important buildings, as well as furniture in public and private collections from around the country. Lahikainen presents a critical analysis of McIntire's carving style and questions some long-held attributions that shed new light on his role as a furniture maker and designer. Samuel McIntire: Carving an American Style accompanies a major exhibition of McIntire's work, curated by Lahikainen, which will open at the Peabody Essex Museum in October 2007. This book is not an exhibition catalogue; rather, it is an in-depth examination of the works by this master carver that will be required reading for anyone interested in Federal-era design, decorative art, and architecture.
Function - Purity - Perfection
Hardcover ISBN: 161428427x
Shaker: Function, Purity, Perfection is an homage to the traditional Shaker values of grace and simplicity. Featured are twenty-eight essential pieces that highlight the defining elements of Shaker design and demonstrate a dedication to perfection. Designer and furniture expert Sir Terence Conran speaks about the profound Shaker influence on twentieth-century furniture, and David Stocks and Jerry Grant of the Shaker Museum | Mount Lebanon illustrate Shaker history, tradition, and the furniture-making techniques that ensured lasting value and beauty. By David Stocks, Jerry Grant, and Sir Terence Conran