Melissa Leventon: California Design 1930-1965: Living in a Modern Way

California Design 1930-1965: Living in a Modern Way
MIT Press, 2011
Hardcover, 360 pages, $60

Fashion Design and Visual Studies faculty member Melissa Leventon contributes the essay "Distinctly Californian: Modernism in Textiles and Fashion" to this catalogue, which accompanied a major exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the first comprehensive examination of California's mid-century modern design. The book includes 350 images (most in color) of furniture, ceramics, metalwork, architecture, graphic and industrial design, film, textiles, and fashion, and 10 incisive essays that trace the rise of the California design aesthetic, from specific design influences and innovations in solid-color commercial ceramics to inspirations from Mexico and Asia, new schools for design training, new concepts about leisure, and the conversion of wartime technologies to peacetime use.