The National Museum of Modern Art
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|Art Limited Editors|
|Published||January 6, 2017 at 12:01pm|
Furniture: Improvement for goodThe National Museum of Modern Art, Design, Tokyo, Japan
Friday March 3, 2017 - Sunday May 7, 2017 - Event ended.
Without ample cushions and pompous upholstering, Club Chair B3 or Wassily chair renovated the traditional ponderous image of chairs. It was first shown in 1925 by Marcel Breuer (1902–1981) at the tender age of twenty-three. The designer was after the war to be known also as the architect of the UNESCO headquarters in Paris and the former Whitney Museum of American Art (now the Met Breuer, an annex to the Metropolitan Museum of Art).
Focusing on differences between various versions of Breuer’s furniture design, this exhibition presents forty pieces from collections in Japan and abroad. Although he extended his creative sphere beyond furniture to architecture after the war, the essence of his design is condensed into his furniture. We hope that this show offers an opportunity to again appreciate Breuer’s design that points to the possibility for diverse interpretations of the phrase “modern design,” and to receive his message to us living in the twenty-first century.
Marcel Breuer was born in Hungary in 1902. In 1920, he entered the Bauhaus, an art school in Germany and learnt design under the progressive and experimental tutelage of the first director of the school, Walter Gropius. From 1925 to 1928, he worked and taught at the furniture workshop at the Bauhaus as a master. After leaving the Bauhaus, he took part in furniture and architecture projects in Switzerland and England. In 1937, Breuer immigrated to America and started teaching at Harvard University. Along with his teaching job, Breuer found a joint architectural practice with Gropius and developed various residential buildings. After establishing an architecture office in New York in 1946, Breuer got more involved in public architecture projects such as museum and university campus besides residential buildings. The UNESCO headquarters in Paris and the former Whitney Museum of American Art (now the Met Breuer, an annex to the Metropolitan Museum of Art) are well-known. Breuer died in 1981.