Exhibition Closing: Blow-Up: Graphic Abstraction in 1960s Design

  • Saint Louis Art Museum 1 Fine Arts Drive St. Louis, MO 63110

Last Day to view Blow-Up: Graphic Abstraction in 1960s Design | Gallery 100 | FREE

Blow-Up: Graphic Abstraction in 1960s Design will explore the emergence of large-scale abstract pattern and form in textiles, fashion, and furnishings of the 1960s, with an emphasis on Finland and Italy as centers of innovation. Referencing Italian filmmaker Michelangelo Antonioni's 1966 fashion-steeped thriller of the same title, the exhibition features a selection of outsized, graphic objects in saturated colors that capture the youthful vitality that came to characterize the decade.

Drawn primarily from the collection, the exhibition will display a number of mint-condition Marimekko textiles acquired in 1971 from the influential Finnish fabric and fashion company and garments by Finnish fashion mavens Vuokko Nurmesniemi and Annika Rimala in the collection of Stephens College. Also featured will be Gaetano Pesce's UP 1 chair, Ettorre Sottsass, Jr.'s massive red-and-white striped wardrobeSuperbox, and Boalum, a six-and-a-half foot long serpentine lamp designed byGianfranco Frattini and Livio Castiglioni.

Blow-Up extends the story of modern design in St. Louis that will be featured in the concurrent special exhibition St. Louis Modern. Period photographs of the Marimekko factory taken by St. Louis photographer Martin Schweig and of a major Scandinavian design festival sponsored by Famous-Barr will highlight the role of local retailers in bringing pioneering Finnish and Italian design of the 1960s to St. Louis. Blow-Up: Graphic Abstraction in 1960s Design is curated by Genny Cortinovis, research assistant in the Department of Decorative Arts.