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Interieurs 50: An Exhibit from 1983
"Interieurs 50: Apogee de la Geometrie Curviligne" is the catalog of an exhibition held in 1983 in Brussels. Organized by the French Trade Commission in Belgium, the show was multi-national, though the majority of the selections were of French origin. As the subtitle suggests, the focus was on the curvilinear-the so-called "New Look" in furniture, textiles, ceramics, glass, and product design. The cover art is itself a manifestation of this style.
A fair number of touchstones are sampled. Included here are Wegner's Flagline Chair, Yanagi's Butterfly Stool, floor lamps by Guariche for Disderot, ceramics by Jouve and Picasso, the Triennale lamp by Arredoluce, Jacobsen's Swan Chair, Bertoia's Bird Chair, Eames' plastic and wire shells (though, curiously, two designs that are clearly not Eames are credited to Eames-vive la internet), and pieces by Royere, Prouve, and Rietveld.
Shown here are a handful of lesser-known works that capture the spirit and flair of mid-century "New Look" design, while avoiding the tendency toward kitsch of same. The unattributed "Spoutnik" lamp on tripod base--which I would call a Saturn lamp--looks more French than Italian, particularly if the fixture involves plastic and is not all-glass. The chairs of steel wire with ball feet are prototypes, and make a nice photo image stacked. The low stack-laminate chaise with perforations is a 1960 French design by Zublena. The fiberglass scoop shell with hairpin tubular metal base is a mid-fifties French design by Merat. The circa 1960 television is covered in faux-snakeskin.