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Article

Irma B. Jaffe

(b New Brunswick, NJ, Aug 15, 1922; d Northampton, MA, June 3, 2000).

American sculptor, illustrator and printmaker. Baskin studied at the New York University School of Architecture and Allied Arts (1939–41), the School of Fine Art (1941–3) and New School for Social Research (1949). He also studied at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière in Paris (1950) and the Accademia delle Belle Arti in Florence (1951). Inspired by the iconic, monolithic imagery of Ancient Egyptian and Sumerian art, and the similar stylistic qualities of Romanesque and Italian Gothic, he consistently and inventively made use of the archaic mode in such prints as the powerful woodcut Man of Peace (1952; see Fern and O’Sullivan, p. 61) as well as in his sculpture. A traditionalist, he carved in wood and stone, and modelled in clay, taking the human figure as his subject. He firmly believed that painting and sculpture should mediate between artist and viewer some moral insight about human experience, and he was convinced that abstract art could not do this. Throughout his career he rejected spatial penetration of form, preferring the holistic look of such works as the ...

Article

Monica Bohm-Duchen

(b Haag, Austria, April 5, 1900; d Santa Barbara, CA, Sept 30, 1985).

American painter, designer, photographer and typographer, of Austrian birth. After serving in the Austrian army (1917–18), Bayer studied architecture under Professor Schmidthammer in Linz in 1919 and in 1920 worked with the architect Emanuel Margold in Darmstadt. From 1921 to 1923 he attended the Bauhaus in Weimar, studying mural painting (with Vasily Kandinsky) and typography; it was at this time that he created the Universal alphabet, consisting only of lowercase letters. In 1925 he returned to the Bauhaus, then in Dessau, as a teacher of advertising, layout and typography, remaining there until 1928. For the next ten years he was based in Berlin as a commercial artist: he worked as art manager of Vogue (1929–30) and as director of the Dorland advertising agency. Shortly after his first one-man exhibitions at the Galerie Povolotski, Paris, and at the Kunstlerbund März, Linz (both 1929), he created photomontages of a Surrealist nature, such as ...

Article

American, 20th century, male.

Born 1880, in New York; died 9 November 1964.

Painter, graphic designer, typographer.

Thomas Maitland Cleland was a member of the Architectural League of America, the Society of Illustrators, the Boston Society of Arts and Crafts and the American Instiute of Graphic Arts. He won medals at the Boston Society of Arts and Crafts in ...

Article

Charlotte Moser

(b Utica, NY, Sept 26, 1862; d Florence, Oct 24, 1928).

American painter and illustrator. He first trained as an architectural draughtsman at the Academy of Design, Chicago (1878). After studying briefly at the Art Institute of Chicago, he went to New York, where he attended the Gotham School and the Art Students League (1886–8). By 1887 he was working as an illustrator for Century magazine. A realist landscape painter in the 19th-century academic tradition, he was influenced by the painters of the Hudson River school and particularly by the luminist, dream-like landscapes of George Inness.

Around 1900 Davies’s paintings became Symbolist in style, with the introduction of mystical nude figures in the landscape, as in Meeting in the Forest (1900; Montclair, NJ, A. Mus.) and Autumn—Enchanted Salutation (1907; Philadelphia, PA, Mus. A.). Themes combining Classical figures and landscape, which evolved in a mythical classicist style reminiscent of the work of Puvis de Chavannes, typified Davies’s work throughout his career. Increasingly drawn to ancient art and Greco-Roman civilization, he eventually identified the archaic with modernism, for example in ...

Article

American, 20th century, male.

Born 1894, in Blue Earth (Minnesota); died 1989.

Designer, graphic artist.

Art Deco.

Donald Deskey studied architecture at the University of California, before travelling to Paris in 1923 where he studied painting and worked as a graphic designer. In 1926 he moved to New York and started his own design firm. He created a wide variety of objects ranging from clocks to radios, furniture and machines, and his most notable commission was for the interiors of Radio City Music Hall in ...

Article

revised by Margaret Barlow

(b Blue Earth, MN, Nov 23, 1894; d Vero Beach, FL, April 20, 1989).

American interior and industrial designer. Deskey gained a degree in architecture and studied painting before working in advertising. From 1922 to 1924 he was head of the art department at Juniata College, Huntingdon, PA. In 1921 and 1925 he made trips to Paris, where he attended the Ecole de la Grande Chaumière and the Académie Colarossi, before returning to New York in 1926 as a champion of modern art and design. In 1926–7 he created the city’s first modern window displays for the Franklin Simon and Saks Fifth Avenue department stores. In 1927 he was joined by the designer Philip Vollmer, and the partnership became Deskey–Vollmer, Inc. (to c. 1929). Deskey expanded into designing interiors, furniture, lamps, and textiles, becoming a pioneer of the Style moderne (as Art Deco was known in America). His earliest model for the interior of an apartment was shown at the American Designers’ Gallery, New York, in ...

Article

American, 20th century, male.

Born 1907, in St Louis (Missouri); died 21 August 1978.

Designer, architect, graphic designer.

Charles Eames was made famous by a lounge chair designed in 1955. Apart from his work as designer of international repute, Eames experimented with sculpture. His works include ...

Article

Douglass Shand-Tucci

(Grosvenor)

(b Pomfret, CT, April 28, 1869; d New York, April 23, 1924).

American architect and illustrator. In 1892–1913 he worked in partnership with Ralph Adams Cram, designing a remarkable series of Gothic Revival churches. His later work, in a variety of styles, culminated in the Nebraska State Capitol, a strikingly original design.

In 1884 Goodhue moved to New York, where he entered the office of Renwick, Aspinwall & Russell as an office boy. In 1891 he won a competition to design a proposed cathedral in Dallas but joined the office of Cram & Wentworth in Boston as chief draughtsman and informal partner. The following year Goodhue became a full partner in Cram, Wentworth & Goodhue, which, after the death of Charles Wentworth (1861–97) and his replacement by Frank Ferguson (1861–1926), became in 1898 Cram, Goodhue & Ferguson.

Before Goodhue’s arrival, Cram & Wentworth had already begun work on All Saints at Ashmont, Boston, their first major work. The final design clearly derives from their earlier proposal of ...

Article

Fridolf Johnson

(b Tarrytown, NY, June 21, 1882; d Au Sable Forks, NY, March 13, 1971).

American painter, printmaker, illustrator, writer, and sailor. He first studied architecture but turned to painting, studying in New York at the schools of William Merritt Chase and of Robert Henri. In his realistic landscapes, the most famous of which related to his long sojourns in such remote and rugged places as Alaska, Tierra del Fuego, and Greenland (e.g. Eskimo in a Kayak, 1933; Moscow, Pushkin Mus. F.A.), he favoured a precise rendering of forms with strong contrasts of light and dark. He was also renowned for the many books that he illustrated and wrote about his adventures. His considerable reputation as an illustrator was based on his striking drawings for such classics as Voltaire’s Candide (New York, 1928) and Herman Melville’s Moby Dick (Chicago, 1930). His simple but distinctive graphic designs, such as God Speed (wood-engraving, 1931; see Kent, 1933, p. 87), were widely imitated.

Rockwellkentiana (New York, 1933)...

Article

American, 20th century, male.

Active in USA, naturalised in 1906.

Born 1892, in Ludvinovka (Ukraine); died 1973, in South Orange (New Jersey).

Painter, lithographer, graphic artist. Urban cityscapes, architecture, figures.

Precisionism.

Louis Lozowick attended the Kiev art school in Ukraine, before emigrating to the USA in ...

Article

Sally Mills

(b Markesan, WI, Oct 1, 1860; d San Francisco, CA, Feb 19, 1945).

American painter, designer, and teacher. First trained by his architect father, he worked as a freelance illustrator before deciding in 1885 to study painting in Paris. He spent about 15 months at the Académie Julian and exhibited at three Salons before returning to California in 1889. He soon began teaching at the California School of Design (now the San Francisco Art Institute) and in 1896 was promoted to Director. During his 16-year tenure, Mathews reformed the curriculum in line with academic practice in Paris and New York and exerted a powerful influence over hundreds of students. Following the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire, Mathews left the school, aligning himself with artists, architects, and businessmen eager to rebuild San Francisco. With his wife (and former student), Lucia Kleinhans Mathews (1870–1955), and a partner, John Zeile, he embarked on several ventures: the magazine Philopolis (1906–16) emphasized art and city planning; the Philopolis Press (...

Article

Paul Louis Bentel

(b Vienna, 1872; d New York, July 10, 1933).

American architect, stage designer, interior designer and illustrator of Austrian birth. He studied at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Vienna under Karl Hasenauer. Urban first received recognition as an architect in the USA in 1904 when his design for the interior of the Austrian Pavilion at the World’s Fair in St Louis, MO, was awarded a Gold Medal. He subsequently established himself in Europe as a stage designer; in 1911 he emigrated to the USA to assume a position as set designer with the Boston Opera Company.

After the completion of the Ziegfield Theater (1922), New York, Urban solidified his reputation as an architect with unexecuted proposals for several large theatres. For the Metropolitan Opera House, intended as the focal point of the first schemes for the Rockefeller Center (1926–8), he proposed a semi-circular seating arrangement, to which he added galleries that projected from the proscenium into the seating area to break down the separation between audience and stage. In ...

Article

Margaret Barlow

Italian designers, active in the USA. Massimo Vignelli (b Milan, 10 Jan 1931; d New York, 27 May 2014) attended the Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera, Milan (1948–50); the Politecnico, Milan (1950–53); and the School of Architecture, University of Venice (1953–7). He chiefly worked on product and graphic design and corporate identity programmes. In the mid-1950s, while still a student, he designed a series of lighting fixtures for the Venini S.p.A. of Murano, most notably the ‘Fungo’ table lamp (1955; e.g. New York, Cooper-Hewitt Mus.), an original concept in striped glass in which the swelling lampshade and conical base form an integrated unit.

Between 1957 and 1960 he travelled and studied in the USA. In 1957 he married Lella [Elena] Vignelli [née Valle] (b Udine, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, 1936). She studied at the School of Architecture, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge (...

Article

Marco Livingstone

(b Los Angeles, CA, Nov 25, 1928).

American painter, draughtsman and printmaker. He took up painting as a self-taught artist in 1953, the same year in which he began working as an illustrator in the Production Engineering Department of Northrop Aircraft in Los Angeles. In 1960, two years after leaving that job and one year after marrying the American painter Jo(sephine Gail) Baer , he settled in New York, where he became associated with the nascent Pop art movement. The Minimalist sculptor Donald Judd, who favourably reviewed his first one-man show at the Robert Elkon Gallery, New York, in 1963, was to become a lifelong supporter; although it might seem curious that an artist whose work was as severe as Judd’s would appreciate the often lighthearted figurative work of Wesley, with its linear comic-book style and pastel colours, Judd clearly appreciated the clarity of form, subtlety, precision of placement and economy of means that defined Wesley’s art from the beginning. ...