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George Nelson
at McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, Texas
Recommendation by Dan R. Goddard


George Nelson, 'Ball Clock,' 1947

Continuing through September 11, 2011

George Nelson re-imagined and re-made the American home and office during the boom years following World War II. His signature sunburst clocks, marshmallow couches and modular “Storagewalls” are among the 120 three-dimensional objects featured in the retrospective “George Nelson: Architect, Writer, Designer, Teacher,” organized by the Vitra Design Museum in Germany.

Inspired by the Renaissance when artists such as Leonardo da Vinci designed buildings and weapons, Nelson introduced high art concepts into industrial design with stripped-down, brightly colored and standardized chairs, desks and other furnishings that pointed toward minimalism and pop art. His sunburst clocks made by the Howard Miller Clock Company reduced the traditional elements of a clock to minimal abstract symbols that simultaneously resembled the spokes of a wagon wheel. His best-selling book “Tomorrow’s House” in 1945 led to an offer to become design director at Herman Miller, a relationship that revolutionized furniture design during the next 25 years. Nelson’s designs still look futuristic, representing a fresh, forward-thinking break with the clunky, handmade past

McNay Art Museum

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