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MoMA

AUTHOR: PAMELA POPESON

Posts by Pamela Popeson
Suited-e1327094896753-150x150
January 24, 2012  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
Suited for Subversion…and Peace, Love, and Understanding

Ralph Borland. Suited for Subversion. 2002. Nylon-reinforced PVC, padding, speaker, and pulse reader. Fund for the Twenty-First Century. Photos by Ralph Borland and Pieter Hugo

Ralph Borland designed Suited for Subversion as a protest tool that could provide protection from police batons during protest events, and at the same time serve to creatively disarm any baton wielders that protesters might confront. Read more

Moji3-e1320250006514-150x150
November 3, 2011  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
Word Up

I’m a big fan of words; letters and the written word to be a little more precise.  And not just the sound and meaning, but actual words—their physicality, their shape and form, and how they look. I have a nephew who was crazy for the letter “u”; specifically the lower case “u,” with serifs. Read more

Hobie-bottom2-e1316016816209-150x150
September 15, 2011  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
MoMA’s Got an Expert Model Surfboard

Hobie Alter. Expert Model Hobie Surfboard, view of deck. 1958

In its August 1997 issue, Longboarder magazine ran a story on MoMA’s Hobie surfboard with the tag line “MoMA’s Got a Woody: Yes, But is it Art?” Fun hook, but perhaps the wrong question. The better question might be, why a surfboard? or better still, why this surfboard? Read more

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July 14, 2011  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
Summertime and the Living’s Easy with the Lawn Chef

Raymond Loewy. Lawn Chef Portable Grill. c.1950. Galvanized and enameled steel. The Museum of Modern Art, Architecture and; Design Purchase Fund

I’ve been thinking about how the Fourth of July is as much a monument to summertime culture as to the ideals of equality, and what a disappointment it would be if Independence Day didn’t happen in the summer. Read more

Freitag-topcat-f13-21-e1305751476491-150x150
May 19, 2011  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
The Freitag Top Cat Bag: Environmentally Responsible and Good-Looking, Too

Markus Freitag and Daniel Freitag. Top Cat Bag (model F13). 1993. Used truck tarpaulins, seatbelts, and innertubes). Manufactured by Freitag, Zurich, Switzerland. The Museum of Modern Art. Gift of Lars Müller

As the Architecture and Design Objects Preparator, it’s not unusual for me to catch people in the galleries pointing at an object I’ve installed, saying something like, “I have one of those.” I suspect you’re not likely to hear this very often in the Painting and Sculpture Galleries, but it happens all the time on the third floor. Read more

Haus-rucker-co1-150x140
March 31, 2011  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
The Mind Expander/Flyhead Helmet: A Mind-Blowing Perception Transformer

Zamp Kelp, Ortner, Pinter, Haus-Rucker-Co. Mind Expander/Flyhead Helmet, from the Environment Transformer project. 1968. On view in the exhibition Shaping Modernity: Design 1880–1980

What is it about the Haus-Rucker-Co. Mind Expander/Flyhead Helmet that so pleases everyone, I wonder? People love it. They just do. It is nice looking, with its translucent green double bubble mask, prismatic eyepieces, and groovy power pack, but the cool factor explodes once you realize what it is and what it’s meant to do. Read more

Stück-natur-150x150
February 7, 2011  |  Artists, Collection & Exhibitions
Stück Natur: The Microenvironment-in-a-Jar Siren

Haus-Rucker & Co. Stück Natur (Piece of Nature). 1971–73

When you spend a lot of time around objects, you find that some objects continue to unfold with every new encounter while other objects do not. I was charmed from the start by Haus-Rucker & Co.’s Stück Natur (Piece of Nature), a microenvironment in a preserving jar, but didn’t expect it to continue to draw me back in. Read more

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November 19, 2010  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Counter Space
The Perfect Kitchen Clock

Hungarian embroidered wall hanging. Translation from Hungarian: “You must do everything at the right time.” Collection Juliet Kinchin. Photograph: Roger Griffith

There’s always been a clock in my kitchen. I can’t imagine otherwise. I bet there’s been one in yours too. I’m not talking about the digital ones on the coffee maker, stove, microwave, etc. that I don’t even bother to set—I’m talking about the clock that’s been in charge of keeping time everywhere I’ve ever lived—my kitchen clock. Read more

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October 15, 2010  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
New Polish Posters

Tomasz Sarnecki. Solidarność (Solidarity). 1989

I was raised on Westerns—The Rifleman, Hondo, Wyatt Earp, Cheyenne, and Lawman, with plenty of John Ford and Sergio Leone thrown in, and I just adored those cowboys. Read more

Lesslampblogimage
June 10, 2010  |  Collection & Exhibitions
Taking a Hammer to Modern Design: Jordi Canudas’s Less Lamp

I love Jordi Canudas‘s Less Lamp, seen in the video above—a super playful and no-nonsense approach to the business of bringing light into a space. Assuming that the primary purpose of a light fixture is simply that of casting light, you can’t get more explicit than a bulb, a hanging cord, and a shade to cut the glare and to reflect and amplify the light. Read more