Home Arts Flyaway Streamlined Roller Skates? I want a pair!

Flyaway Streamlined Roller Skates? I want a pair!

by Archives October 9, 2007

If your idea of a trip to the museum sums up to pretentious exhibits of paintings, sculptures and installation art, think again.
Until Oct. 28 vintage vacuum cleaners, hair dryers, record players, as well as a whole variety of common objects, are put onto the fore front at The Montreal Museum of fine Arts in American Streamlined Designed: The world of Tomorrow, an amazing inquest in the field of industrial design that examines the influence of the streamline style within American life.
On display are over 185 items from all areas of design, ranging from the commercial world and domestic sphere, to sports and leisure.
Useful articles of all kinds with rather amusing names, such as the “flyaway streamlined roller skates” or the “Silvertone Rocket radio”, can finally be appreciated for their aesthetic.
Historically, streamline is a style that emerged out of the 1930 post-depression period.
In this time of social disruption, political turmoil and economic instability, it symbolized the rejection of old ideologies and reflected the need for change and modernity. The term streamline refers to hydrodynamic and aerodynamic principles, borrowed from the physics of fluid dynamics.
The style, which intended to minimize resistance to wind and air, was originally applied to the engineering of airplanes, automobiles, trains, and marine vessels. Suggesting speed and glamour, streamline was eventually adopted by designers in the creation of new forms of architecture, interior decoration, and everyday household goods for the home and office.
Prior to 1930, decoration and design had been understood as two different entities, one focused on issues of style and beauty, while the other aimed to find solutions to everyday problems. By giving useful objects a new aesthetic, streamline initiated a new period in design production as well as the emergence of a more contemporary type of artist: the industrial designer. With its stretched lines and curvaceous shapes, streamline conveyed efficiency, luxury, and, more importantly, progress. Everyday tasks, such as preparing dinner, could now take a glamorous twist by using “futuristic” items such as the “streamliner meat slicer”!
American Streamlined Design: The World of Tomorrow, is totally fun and definitely worth the detour, especially considering that the Montreal Museum of fine Arts is FREE this fall.
It is actually a shame that this exhibition is not being more advertised as it appeared to be the most interesting of those currently taking place. With a beautiful setting, and truly exquisite pieces, American Streamlined Design: The World of Tomorrow, while making you smile on several occasions, will push you to look differently at everyday objects and, for once, appreciate them not for their usage, but for their unique design.

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