The American Design Adventure continues the fascinating and detailed examination of industrial design begun by Arthur Pulos in American Design Ethic. The first volume discussed and illustrated the objects and artifacts, the foremost designers and schools of design from Colonial Times to the 1940s. This second splendidly illustrated volume carries the story into the heroic era of American industrial design, from the 1940s to the 1970s.
These were the decades of American industrial design’s dominance when special exhibitions and world fairs made design a subject of national pride. The big business realized the influence of trademarks, packaging, and corporate identity programs on their bottom line. The fashion world created a consumer demand for name brands and well-designed products. Industrial design flourished under the capable hands of Raymond Loewy and Charles Eames, while corporations like IBM, RCA, Herman Miller, and Knoll were sponsors of the great American design adventure.
The extraordinary collection of illustrations that Pulos had assembled documents all of these critical design trends while evoking the nostalgia of the 50s and 60s when Pop and Rock held sway.
Pulos probes all aspects of industrial designers and their work – in education and private corporations, professional organizations and governmental agencies. He also covers prefabricated housing, graphics, manufactured products from the exotic to the pragmatic, and public systems from the sociopolitical to the economic.