Report from Hawaii News Now (click link for video) on new exhibit on Art Deco Hawaii.
(Hawaii News Now) - From the 19-20’s to the 19-40’s, art deco flourished in the islands. The Honolulu Museum of Art is hosting the first major museum exhibition focusing on the Hawaiian take on the art deco style.The Honolulu Museum of Art presents Art Deco Hawai‘i, the first major museum exhibition to focus on the seductive Hawaiian take on the international Art Deco style, which flourished in the islands from the 1920s to the 1940s.
"American preservationists, too, have become so accustomed to pushing for the enforcement of preservation laws that they often are stereotyped as gatekeepers of nostalgia. Those who fought New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s plan for upzoning part of Midtown Manhattan were demonized as anti-development. In truth, they were trying to protect the existing development. Polyphonic streetscapes of buildings of varying heights, styles and forms blended with smart new design attract people. Modern monoliths, embodied by St. Louis’ old Pruitt-Igoe (at worst) or Paris’ La Defense (at best), repel rather than attract people."
The Pacific Telephone & Telegraph Building at 140 New Montgomery was one of San Francisco’s first high-rises and was the tallest building in the city at 26 stories upon its completion in 1925. Purchased by developer Wilson Meany in 2007, the building has now been updated and converted into a modern office tower with 280,000 square feet. Tech tenants such as Yelp and Lumosity are set to move into the space, which keeps much of its stunning Art Deco character, especially in the striking lobby. Renovation work cost $60 million and included the installation of 1,300 new windows, a seismic retrofit, the creation of a sculpture garden and outdoor restaurant space and the installation of new green technology to reduce energy usage.
June 27 2014 - September 28 2014 Seventh Floor, The Wolfsonian–FIU, 1001 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, FL
The first major exploration of the theater and industrial designer whom the New York Times dubbed “the Leonardo da Vinci of the 20th century.”
A visionary who was equally comfortable in the realms of fact and fiction, Norman Bel Geddes (1893–1958) played a significant role in the 1920s and ’30s, shaping not only modern America but also the nation’s image of itself as innovator and leader into the future. Bel Geddes most famously expressed his dynamic vision of this American future—streamlined, technocratic, and optimistic—with his unforgettable Futurama exhibition at the 1939–40 New York World’s Fair. Bringing together some 200 never-before-seen drawings, models, photographs and films of theater sets and costumes, housing projects and appliances, airplanes and automobiles, the exhibition underscores that Bel Geddes sought nothing less the transformation of American society through design.
I Have Seen the Future is a traveling exhibition organized by the Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin.
Commercial real estate feature on recent upgrades at the Empire State Building< meant to attract high-end tenants. This after the building’s lobby has completed a total renovation and the building has undergone a massive overhaul to meet or exceed modern energy standards. -Wendy
Workers inside the Empire State Building may soon be able to imagine testing their weight-lifting prowess or other muscle-building regimens against the mythical feats of King Kong who once scaled this building’s facade.
This summer, a 15,000-square-foot fitness center for tenants and their employees will open in the concourse of the Empire State Building, part of an effort to reinvent the 83-year-old tower as a modern day urban campus.
The gym, with white, undulating tile walls and dark wood finishes, can accommodate the building’s roughly 10,000 workers. Executives who don’t want to work out with the rank-and-file will have access to a private gym suite.
Other changes to the Art Deco landmark are also meant to appeal to a high-end market. Empire State Realty Trust, which owns and operates the building at 34th Street and Fifth Avenue, is also adding a conference center on the 67th floor and a 100-seat white-tablecloth restaurant on the lobby level, with private dining below. The restaurant, State Bar and Grill, wants to cater to a business clientele, rather than the millions of tourists who visit the observatory every year (about 4.3 million in 2013).
Not architecture, but cool enough to share, I thought.
The Art Deco style also influenced postage stamp design in a number of countries in the twenties and thirties. One of the focuses of Art Deco was transportation and machines, particularly airplanes, and airmail stamps of the period often were designed in this style. Stamps from some countries showed strong art deco influence, while in others it was absent or barely noticeable. The countries whose stamp designs were most influenced by Art Deco include a number of European countries such as France and the Netherlands, as well as several Latin American countries, particularly Mexico, Brazil and Chile. Stamps of the United States and Great Britain, in contrast, followed traditional design and showed little influence of this new style.