Denver Art Museum
What Is Modern? Exhibition GraphicsDecember 1, 2010
To assist curator Darrin Alfred, and the Denver Art Museum in communicating the thinking behind the works in "What is Modern?" and the exhibition itself, title, text, and label graphics were designed. The exhibition graphics system was designed to support the works on display and compliment both their modernist aesthetics and functional qualities.
"The term modern in its simplest form implies the up-to-date, a current development, or, better still, a spirit in step with its own time. Modern can refer to an 80-year-old innovation that is still in use today as well as a forward-thinking contemporary design. The date when something was made is not as relevant as how and why it was created. Drawn primarily from the museum’s collection, this exhibition offers a glimpse into the diverse methods and ideologies explored by designers as they respond to the compelling issues of their own time.
During the 1800s designers took advantage of recently developed machine-based production techniques and newly available materials to create unprecedented forms that added diversity and fresh interest to the decorative arts of their time. In every era since, forward-thinking individuals, often in collaboration with innovative manufacturers, have continued to demonstrate how an authentic search for form can be both topical and intensely personal. Ranging from the utilization of large-scale factory production and industrial materials to maintaining longstanding craft values and traditions, as well as to developing a synthesis between the two, design encompasses a variety of methods, materials, and concepts. And while these works may be of different generations, together they represent the past, present, and future of what is modern."
– Darrin Alfred
Curator, Denver Art Musuem
Department of Architecture, Design & Graphics
Photography by: Jamie Kripke