The Master of Metals : An Exhibition at Cranbrook Explores Harry Bertoia’s Jewelry and the Forging of His Career | Modern Magazine


Cranbrook Art Museum in the NewsExhibitionsHarry Bertoia

A WRITHING CENTIPEDE WROUGHT in hammer­ed brass and a gold necklace evoking the decayed, wilted sepals of a plant are among the jewelry de­signs on view in the Cranbrook Art Museum’s ex­hibition Bent, Cast, and Forged: The Jewelry of Harry Bertoia. To celebrate the centennial of the artist’s birth, the institution has organized the first museum exhibition devoted exclusively to his jewelry. A founder of the American studio jewelry move­ment, Bertoia’s concepts, materials, and methods of construction laid the groundwork for a style that flourished in the postwar years. While he is better known for his large-­scale sculpture and the chairs he designed for Knoll, Bertoia’s jewelry designs from the early 1940s were vital to the develop­ment of his versatile career. Arri (Harry) Bertoia was born on March 10, 1915, in the village of San Lorenzo in northeast Italy. At fifteen, he and his father immigrated to Detroit, a growing city with ...

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Jewelry of Harry Bertoia on display at Cranbrook | The Detroit News


Cranbrook Art Museum in the NewsHarry Bertoia

Harry Bertoia was one of the towering, mid-century modernists — along with architect Eero Saarinen and furniture designers Florence Knoll and Charles and Ray Eames — who rocketed out of Cranbrook in the 1940s and revolutionized design and everyday life. The Italian-born sculptor, who died in 1978, is the subject of the new show, “Bent, Cast & Forged: The Jewelry of Harry Bertoia,” at the Cranbrook Art Museum through Nov. 29. Bertoia, who came to the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1937 on a full scholarship, is probably most famous for his classics of modern life, the “Diamond” wire chairs produced by Knoll Associates. But he also designed the elegant metal screens at Saarinen’s GM Tech Center and the Dallas Public Library. (Dallas’ mayor at the time described the screen as “a bunch of junk painted up,” but the public came to love it.) “When you think of the mid-century ‘Mad Men’ white guys ...

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Cranbrook Art Museum Presents Bent, Cast, and Forged: The Jewelry of Harry Bertoia


Harry BertoiaPress Releases

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, Mich., February 10, 2015 – Cranbrook Art Museum is pleased to announce that the exhibition Bent, Cast, and Forged: The Jewelry of Harry Bertoia will open on March 14, 2015. This is the first Museum exhibition devoted exclusively to Harry Bertoia’s designs for jewelry. It will run through November 29, 2015. The exhibition will open with an exclusive ArtMembers’ reception on March 13, from 6-8pm, featuring a lecture from Celia Bertoia, Harry Bertoia’s youngest daughter and director of the Harry Bertoia Foundation. Memberships will be available for purchase at the door that evening at half-price. Bertoia (b. 1915 - d. 1978) is a graduate of Cranbrook Academy of Art and a former Metalsmithing instructor. He has received international acclaim for his woven wire metal furniture and large bronze and copper sculptures, but his earliest exploration of the medium originated in jewelry design while still a student at Cass Tech High School in Detroit ...

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Cranbrook Art Museum Presents MR. MDWST – A REAL GOOD TIME by BEVERLY FRE$H


Press Releases

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, Mich., January 21, 2015 – As part of a new series showcasing emerging contemporary artists, Cranbrook Art Museum welcomes Cranbrook Academy of Art graduate Zack Ostrowski for his new exhibition MR. MDWST – A REAL GOOD TIME by BEVERLY FRE$H. The exhibition will open with an exclusive ArtMembers’ reception and performance on February 6, 2015, from 6-8pm. Memberships can be purchased at the door the evening of the event. The exhibition opens to the public on February 7 and runs through March 22, 2015. MR. MDWST (a truncation of Mister Midwest) is a continuation of the adventures of Beverly Fre$h—a stylized autobiographical character that doubles as an artist persona and stage name for Zack Ostrowski. Like a postmodern tale of the picaresque, Ostrowski has traveled extensively over the last two years as Beverly Fre$h on a quest to understand, reconfigure, and interrupt the social and cultural rituals of the rural Midwest. He ...

Tagged: Beverly Fre$h, Harry Bertoia, MR. MDWST, Nick Cave, Performance

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Cranbrook Art Museum Announces New Exhibition Series: The Cranbrook Hall of Wonders, Theater of the Mind, and Iris Eichenberg: Bend


Press ReleasesTheater of the Mind

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, Mich., Oct. 29, 2014 – Cranbrook Art Museum announces an ambitious new series of exhibitions today, designed to captivate the imagination, showcase the depth of the collections on Cranbrook’s campus, and highlight the pioneering work of Cranbrook Academy of Art’s Metalsmithing Artist-in-Residence. The Cranbrook Hall of Wonders: Artworks, Objects, and Natural Curiosities draws its inspiration from sixteenth-century “Cabinet of Curiosities” or “Wunderkammers,” and will showcase art, natural oddities, and anthropological discoveries side-by-side – pulling items from the collections of both the Art Museum and Institute of Science. Theater of the Mind focuses on the imagination of the audience, with light and sound installations accompanying artworks from a broad range of artists, including Hans Rosenström, Anthony McCall, Bruce Nauman, Roni Horn, Hiroshi Sugimoto, and others. And Iris Eichenberg: Bend is Cranbrook Art Museum’s first solo exhibition featuring Cranbrook Academy of Art Metalsmithing Artist-in-Residence, Iris Eichenberg, and is a new body ...

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Cranbrook and the American Look


Cranbrook Sightings Blog

Cranbrook Sighting # 11 Sighter: Shelley Selim Sighted: Cranbrook Art Museum and Library Location: the Internet Date: March 10, 2014The Internet Archive continues to be a hardy source of endearment for me, and this weekend I found myself traipsing through a favorite district of its offerings--Prelinger's backlog of mid-century Populuxe videos. The term "Populuxe" was coined by cultural and design historian Thomas Hine for his 1986 book of the same name, which analyzed the hyper-consumerism that swept the United States in the 1950s and '60s. Product styling--an extension of a collective fervor for material abundance and variety--became a wellspring of national pride during the Cold War, particularly as a means of counter-defining American capitalist prosperity against the Soviet Union's Communist economy. Many "Populuxe" promotional films were produced in the mid-century, and American Look, sponsored by General Motors' Chevrolet Division, is a champion of its genre. It has it all: bright colors (in the '50s, practically ...

Tagged: Advertisements, Film, Harry Bertoia, Populuxe, Shelley Selim

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Cranbrook Art Museum's Lower Level Galleries are open. Enjoy Pay-As-You-Wish Admission through October 29.