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Authors on Architecture: Michigan Modern
SAH/SCC Panel & Book Signing, Culver City
Saturday, September 23, 2017

SAH/SCC will take a virtual trip to the Midwest to explore the Great Lakes State’s contributions to design and architecture, hosted by the Herman Miller showroom (Lynch/Eisinger/Design, 2009) in Culver City. Brian D. Conway, Michigan’s State Historic Preservation Officer, and Amy L. Arnold, Preservation Planner for the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office, will be joined by contributing authors Alan Hess and SAH/SCC Member Emily Bills for a tour of Michigan’s contributions to modern design in architecture, automobiles, furniture, and education. Their new book, Michigan Modern: Design That Shaped America (Gibbs Smith, 2016), will be available for sale and signing.

And what could be a more perfect setting? At the Herman Miller showroom, we will be surrounded by iconic furniture designs from mid-century, as well as contemporary products, that show that the spirit of good design is still alive and well in Zeeland, MI.

A lushly illustrated tome, Michigan Modern begins with the state’s role in modernism’s development, with the acknowledgment that “the synergy of industry, prosperity, and educational leadership in Michigan produced and attracted some of the most important Modern architects and designers of the twentieth century.” The book heralds both the designers and the designs, and duly acknowledges the classic American businesses that helped spur the innovations.  Southern California plays its part, the authors note, with General Motors’ head of design, Harley Earl, hailing from Los Angeles, and the Eames House’s use of pre-fab steel joists developed in Albert Kahn’s Detroit office.

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