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SERIES OF PHOTOGRAPHS FROM THE FIRST EXHIBITION
HELD AT THE AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY, NOVEMBER 12 TO DECEMBER 1, 1919
YOUNG AMERICA IN THE RAIMENT OF OLD PERSIA
In former times each nation had its few special styles in dress and there were slow processes of refinement that operated upon these styles. Now dress is cosmopolitan, but cosmopolitan with an almost personal variation in detail. There are fundamental types that return in the vogne from time to time, and these go back to the old national styles. The wraiths of the past come and go like shadows-or shall we say silhouettes?
A Bokhara Reproduction. - Bonwit Teller & Co.
Connected with the American
MERICA has reason to be vastly proud of her recent progress in expressing beauty through the things of everyday use. The Exhibition of Industrial Art in Textiles and Costumes, covered in part by the series of photographs that accompanies this brief statement, disclosed new forces in American life. It disclosed a will of the people to work and think together, an ideal of individual satisfaction in the common good, a conception of the nation as the exponent of a philosophy of justice, industry, and well-being, and a recognition of the place of beauty and good craftsmanship in the things that men and women spend their lives to create.
Such emotional forces, engrossing society, are the surest protection against the doctrines of individual or class selfishness. When the national consciousness shall be duly expressed through all the little things that touch life, through garments and dishes and house furnishings, the great things will assume a new significance. And in bringing about such a realization what would be more effective than a great Museum of the Passing Today, which would stage kaleidoscopic expositions of those emotional qualities that glorify labor and serve as an educational clearing house of objective teaching in what is good?
A museum of commercial arts would, in effect, be a museum of the ethnology of today. It would be entirely justifiable from every scientific standpoint and would receive public support because of its direct relation to life in its broader aspects and to the special problems of arts and industries. Such a museum need not be involved directly in the
of Commercial Arts
Museum of Natural History
competitive activities of commerce. It can reserve for itself a position above criticism as an umpire of the best in construction and decoration and as a teacher of facts and fundamentals.
The great arts into which decoration enters, or into which it may enter, involve tremendous values in men and money. Mention need only be made of textiles, costumes, pottery, jewelry, and house furnishings. All of these have their foundations set deeply in the arts and crafts of the lesser and earlier nations. It would not be proper to show such arts except in historical perspective and the American Museum of Natural History with its great collections from all times and all parts of the world is best able to furnish such a perspective. Moreover, this public institution has a record of solid achievement in its relation, first to industry, and second to education.
Let us imagine a large section of the American Museum of Natural History given over to the needs and uses of commerce. First there would be halls so arranged that the modern materials could be placed on temporary exhibition without risk or deterioration. Second, there would be more permanent educational collections covering the world range of definite processes. Third, there would be ample provision for classes in design coming from public or private schools and for professional designers coming from manufacturing establishments. Fourth, there would be scientific laboratories where special problems relating to fibers, dyes, pottery clays, cabinet woods, and so on, could be studied. by experts.
After the Coptic.-Bonwit Teller & Co.
A STUDY IN SOURCES AND RESULTS
In this exhibit we see a clear demonstration of the use of art motives from all parts of the world in modern machine-made embroidery. The map in the foreground shows
David Aaron & Co., Inc.
HOW THE CULTURE OF THE AMERICAN INDIAN MAY BECOME OUR OWN
There is something refreshing in the art of the American Indian. It is simple, direct and sincere; it is fundamentally good and all its possibilities of development have
Here we see an application in which the fun
David Aaron & Co., Inc.