FURNITURE FORUM, April 1951. Englewood, NJ: Phillip L. Pritchard [Volume 2, Number 3].

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April 1951

Phillip L. Pritchard [Editor], Edgar Bartolucci [Art Director]

Phillip L. Pritchard [Editor], Edgar Bartolucci [Art Director]: FURNITURE FORUM [The Portfolio of Contemporary Design]. Englewood, NJ: Phillip L. Pritchard, April 1951 [Volume 2, Number 3]. Quarto. Printed wrappers. 44 pp. bound with brads [as issued]. Fully illustrated in black and white. Multiple paper stocks. Curatorial information includes designer, materials, and measurements. Uncoated wrappers worn and soiled with some spine wear, but a very good copy.

Publisher Phillip Pritchard went out of his way to showcase Chicago’s Institute of Design in this Furniture Forum: Institute Director Serge Chermayeff wrote a two-page editorial “Design Demonstrated,” and included a four-page portfolio of student work presented in its own section.

8.75 x 11 softcover edition with 44 pages of black and white photographs of contemporary furniture, lighting, and fabric, circa 1951. This volume is a goldmine of reference material for identifying early-fifties contemporary furniture and home fixtures, but you probably already knew that, didn't you?

  • Publisher’s Notes
  • 1951 Good Design Exhibit Chicago
  • Design Demonstrated: Serge Chermayeff
  • Personalities: short illustrated profiles of Edgar Kaufmann, Jr., Finn Juhl, Elizabeth Burris-Meyer, Serge Chermayeff, Dorothy Liebes, Yasha Heifetz, Jospeh Carreiro, Mohammed Gulam Ali, Richard Bauer, Robert Maganuma, and Herbert Slobin.
  • Furniture: Aalto Design-Finsven: Alvar Aalto; Avard: Darrell Landrum; Bernhard & Hayes: Martin Freedgood; Fabry: E. G. Astrom; Finland House: Werner West, Olof Ottelin, Ilmari Tapiovaara; Ficks Reed Co.: Swanson Associates; Herman Miller Furniture Company: Charles Eames, George Nelson; Lehigh Furniture Company: Harold Bartos; Pine & Baker: Jospeh Carreiro; Voice & Vision: Irving Rose; Jens Risom Design: Jens Risom; Swedish Modern; Van Keppel-Green: Hendrik Van Keppel & Taylor Green.
  • Lighting: Heifetz: Gilbert A. Watrous, A. W. & Marion Geller, Robert Gage, Zahara Schatz, John Van Zweinem [MoMA Lamp competition winners and honorable mentions]; General Lighting: Tom Calamia, Harry Handler; Middletown Lighting Co.: Harry Gitlin, Sy J. Miller;  Nessen Studio: Walter Van Nessen.
  • Fabrics:Ruth Adler Designs: Ruth Adler;  Isabel Scott Fabrics; Greeff Fabrics: Angelo Testa; Ben Rose.
  • Floor Coverings: James Lees And Sons;  Klearflax Linen Looms.
  • Student-Experimental Section: Institute Of Design, ChicagoFour-page portfolio of work from students at the Institute Of Design at the Illinois Institute of Technology, with work by Rinaldo Vian, Murray Rothenburg, Peter Augusztiny, Robert Nickle, Robert Brownjohn, Chon Gregory, Otto Kolb, Noral Olson, and Roy Gussow. According to the text several of these pieces were exhibited at teh Museum of Modern Art. An interesting glimpse of student work from the tail end of Serge Chermayeff’s Directorship.
  • Retail Directory

The Furniture Forum Advisory Board for 1951 included Robert Alexander, Pietro Belluschi, Serge Chermayeff, Alexander Girard, Charles Granger, Greta Grossman, Walter Gropius, Karl Kamrath, Carl Koch, Ernest Kump, Dorothy Wright Liebes, Alvin Lustig, George Nelson, Hugh Stubbins, and others.

In 1937 former Bauhaus Master László Moholy-Nagy accepted the invitation of a group of Midwest business leaders to set up an Industrial Design school in Chicago. The New Bauhaus opened in the Fall of 1937 financed by the Association of Arts and Industries as a recreation of the Bauhaus curriculum with its workshops and holistic vision in the United States.

In Chicago Moholy aimed at liberating the creative potential of his students through disciplined experimentation with materials, techniques, and forms. The focus on natural and human sciences was increased, and photography grew to play a more prominent role at the school in Chicago than it had done in Germany. Training in mechanical techniques was more sophisticated than it had been in Germany. Emerging from the basic course, various workshops were installed, such as "light, photography, film, publicity", "textile, weaving, fashion", "wood, metal, plastics", "color, painting, decorating" and "architecture". The most important achievement at the Chicago Bauhaus was probably in photography, under the guidance of teachers such as György Kepes, Nathan Lerner, Arthur Siegel or Harry Callahan.

Moholy-Nagy drew on several émigrés affiliated with the former Bauhaus to fill the ranks of the faculty, including György Kepes and Marli Ehrman. The school struggled with financial issues and insufficient enrollment and survived only with the aid from grants of the Rockefeller and Carnegie foundations as well as from donations from numerous Chicago businesses. The New Bauhaus was renamed the Institute of Design in 1944 and the school finally merged with the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) in 1949.