PATRIOT RADIO: 1939
The period between the 1920s and 1930s can also be considered part of the Bauhaus period, which was a leading time for the development of modernism. During this time an emphasis was placed on factory-produced designs that were simple, functional, and industrial. The idea was to have clean designs made of basic materials; this went not only for furniture, but also for all types of design such as textiles and applied art. Norman Bel Geddes was one of the most prolific and influential industrial designers of his time, and he helped create the Streamlined style that defined American design throughout the 1930s and early ‘40s. He also played a role in the design styles of the art deco and Bauhaus period. Bel Gedde’s greatest designs have been influenced by unrealized, generally futuristic projects.
Like the rest of Bel Geddes’s industrial, streamline designs, this style can be seen in his patriot radio design from 1939. His intentions for the radio were to promote both American technology and culture, thereby helping to bolster national pride during the difficult years of the Great Depression. The design of the radio was to represent the stars-and stripes motif, to create an optimistic and useful emblem of American technology, industry and identity.
Due to the period that the Patriot Radio was created, the best era it should be placed within, is that of the Bauhaus style- inspired room. Therefore, in this room that has been created for the radio are two Barcelona chairs, designed during the Bauhaus period, which have been placed adjacently to one another, with one chair having an ottoman. A table from the tulip pedestal group has been carefully placed next to the Barcelona chair. From the same Bauhaus period a lamp and rug have also been placed thoughtfully into the space. Lastly the Patriot Radio can be found on the Bauhaus style bookshelf that rests against the back wall.
Each piece of furniture placed in the room complements the other in someway. The simple, clean line design can be seen in all of the furniture that is placed throughout the room. It starts with the curvilinear lamp that sits behind the floating, light Barcelona chair, to the straight-line bookshelf and back to the simple pedestal table. These modern, art deco pieces look as if they were meant to be put in the same room together. They make a beautiful combination.