The Mid-Century Modern aesthetic didn’t just infiltrate architecture and furniture design; it also impacted fine art. With the creeping spread of suburbia came a new kind of decorative, mass-produced artwork that lent an instant air of sophistication to bland middle-class homes, schools, and offices. Companies popped up to manufacture art as multiples, like the metal wall sculptures of C. Jeré and the silkscreen prints of Marushka.

Expressionistic paintings of bridges, waterways, and urban skylines dotted the walls of swanky bars, while portraits of big-eyed children, clowns, and poodles hung in dens and living rooms. The trend also incorporated sculptural objects, like Sascha Brastoff’s painted ceramics or Lisa Larson’s stoneware sculptures.

Though Mid-Century art wasn’t all kitsch: The period also included the work of abstract expressionists like Mark Rothko’s color fields, the pop-culture commentary of Andy Warhol, and the abstract illusions of Victor Vasarely’s Op Art. Eventually, even many fine artists of the period had their work reproduced as decorative posters or wearable fashions.


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Metropolitan Museum of Art: Timeline of Art History

Metropolitan Museum of Art: Timeline of Art History

Travel around the world through art with this museums collection of over 6,000 works of art, from Egypt to North A… [read review or visit site]

Herman Miller Consortium Collection

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This website showcases several hundred pieces of furniture, held by thirteen museums, that were designed for Herman… [read review or visit site]

EamesCollector.com

EamesCollector.com

Steven Cabella's personal homage to Charles and Ray Eames. This site is as clean and visually appealing as the Eame… [read review or visit site]

Work of Charles and Ray Eames

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This Library of Congress microsite is an overview of the postwar modern design work of Charles (1907-78) and Ray (1… [read review or visit site]

Classic Modern

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Get a taste of how homes were lit in the 50s, 60s, and 70s with the Danish retro-style lighting designs featured on… [read review or visit site]



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