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Joseph Urban: Unlocking an Art Deco Bedroom

Author/EditorDehan, Amy M (Author)
Long, Christopher (Author)
McGoey, Elizabeth (Author)
Publisher: D Giles Ltd
ISBN: 9781911282563
Pub Date01/02/2022
BindingHardback
Pages120
Dimensions (mm)254(h) * 229(w)
A study of the impact of Austrian-born architect and designer Joseph Urban (1872-1933) on the development and acceptance of American Modernism through the story of one of his last commissions, the Art Deco bedroom he created for the teenage Elaine Wormser.
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Designed in 1929 and completed in 1930, this rare, bespoke bedroom, created for the seventeen-year-old Elaine Wormser, embodies the skillful blend of Viennese artistic influences, sleek modern finishes, daring colour and pattern that marked all of the artist's greatest achievements. The interior, whose elements are held by the Cincinnati Art Museum, has never been fully researched, published or displayed before now. Five essays, accompanied by full colour illustrations, unlock the narratives and significance of this important historic interior.
Joseph Urban arrived in Boston in 1911; he lived and worked in the United States for the rest of his life. Over the next twenty-two years, he would become one of the nation's most important and celebrated designers, at the forefront of American modernism, doing as much as anyone to shape its distinctive face. His iconic designs include the New School for Social Research, New York, 1930; the colour direction for the 1933 World's Fair; and the Mar-a-Lago estate, Palm Beach, Florida, 1926 for E. F Hutton and Marjorie Merriweather Post.

Designed in 1929 and completed in 1930, this rare, bespoke bedroom, created for the seventeen-year-old Elaine Wormser, embodies the skillful blend of Viennese artistic influences, sleek modern finishes, daring colour and pattern that marked all of the artist's greatest achievements. The interior, whose elements are held by the Cincinnati Art Museum, has never been fully researched, published or displayed before now. Five essays, accompanied by full colour illustrations, unlock the narratives and significance of this important historic interior.
Joseph Urban arrived in Boston in 1911; he lived and worked in the United States for the rest of his life. Over the next twenty-two years, he would become one of the nation's most important and celebrated designers, at the forefront of American modernism, doing as much as anyone to shape its distinctive face. His iconic designs include the New School for Social Research, New York, 1930; the colour direction for the 1933 World's Fair; and the Mar-a-Lago estate, Palm Beach, Florida, 1926 for E. F Hutton and Marjorie Merriweather Post.

Amy Miller Dehan is the Curator of Decorative Arts and Design. Dehan joined the Cincinnati Art Museum in 2001. She was part of the curatorial team that developed The Cincinnati Wing: The Story of Art in the Queen City and has worked on various installations of the Museum's American and European art collections. Her writing on decorative arts and design has appeared in catalogues including Cincinnati Silver: 1788-1940; Outside the Ordinary: Contemporary Art Glass; and Cincinnati Art Carved Furniture and Interiors. She has also been published in The Magazine ANTIQUES, Silver Magazine, Gastronomica, and other periodicals. Dehan has curated multiple exhibitions for the Cincinnati Art Museum, including Cincinnati Silver (2014); The Art of Sound: Four Centuries of Musical Instruments (2012); Going Dutch: Contemporary Design from Local Collections and the Cincinnati Art Museum (2011); Force of Nature: Contemporary Japanese Ceramics from the Horvitz Collection (2010); and Outside the Ordinary: Contemporary Art in Glass, Wood and Ceramics from the Wolf Collection (2009). Dehan earned her B.A. from the College of William and Mary and her M.A. from the University of South Carolina. She is an alumnus of The Winterthur Fall Institute and the Attingham Summer School. She held internships and fellowships at the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art and has worked in the field of decorative arts for over ten years. Elizabeth MCGoey, Ph.D. is the Ann S. and Samuel M. Mencoff Associate Curator of American Decorative Arts, Art Institute of Chicago. Christopher Long is Martin S. Kermacy Centennial Professor, American Collegiate Schools of Architecture Distinguished Professor and University Distinguished Teaching Professor, School of Architecture, University of Texas at Austin.

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