History of Design: Decorative Arts and Material Culture, 1400–2000
by Bard Graduate Center (Author), Pat Kirkham (Editor), Susan Weber (Editor)
A comprehensive examination of the history of decorative arts and design throughout the world over the last 600 years.
This comprehensive examination, which spans six centuries of global design, is the first to provide a comprehensive account of decorative arts and design produced in Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, the Indian subcontinent, and the Islamic world from 1400 to the present. Interiors, furniture, textiles and clothes, glass, graphics, metals, ceramics, exhibitions, product design, landscape and garden design, and theatre and cinema design are all covered in this meticulously documented and richly illustrated collection. The writers explain the evolution of style, form, materials, techniques, and important problems like gender, racism, patronage, cultural appropriation, continuity versus innovation, and high versus low culture, in four historical sections, each of which is subdivided geographically.
Hundreds of artifacts in their modern contexts are presented by leading experts in design history and decorative arts studies, revealing the enormous extent to which the applied arts have enriched conventions, ceremonial, and daily life worldwide over the past 600 years. This ambitious, ground-breaking work is required reading, adding a definitive classic to the current knowledge on design, decorative arts, and material culture while simultaneously presenting these topics to new readers in a thorough, erudite book with broad appeal.
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