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Marxism, abstraction, ideology, and Vkhutemas [electronic resource] : the Design Laboratory reassessed, 1935 1940 / Mandy Lynn Drumming

Catalog Data

Drumming, Mandy Lynn  Search this
Rohde, Gilbert 1894-1944  Search this
Schapiro, Meyer 1904-1996  Search this
Design Laboratory (School : New York, N.Y.)  Search this
VKhUTEMAS (Art school)  Search this
Physical description:
1 online resource (iv, 105 p.) : ill
Electronic resources
United States
20th century
Title from PDF title page (viewed on Jan. 11, 2013).
The Design Laboratory (1935-1940), a New York industrial design school supported by American industrialists and the state, embodied a utopian desire to merge the aspirations of the Machine Age with the social policies of the Depression Era. With a faculty and advisory board including some of the most significant names in the arts, namely Gilbert Rohde, the school's director, and Meyer Schapiro, an influential Marxist art historian, the Design Laboratory sought to educate a semi-skilled labor force for careers in industrial design. Traditionally the Design Laboratory is thought of as being inspired by the Bauhaus and Walter Gropius' model of education. In a reassessment of the Design Laboratory's context, political leanings, pedagogy, and industrial art, the school indeed supported Marxism, abstraction, and rhetoric and is compared to the art and design school founded in Russia after the Bolshevik Revolution known as the Vkhutemas (1920-1930). Linking the Design Laboratory to the Soviet model more so than the Gropius one of utopian socialism reveals fundamental changes in American design and education during the late 1930's and successive generations.
Industrial design--Study and teaching (Higher)  Search this
Industrial design--History  Search this
Communism and art  Search this
Call number:
NK1404 .D78 2011
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries