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This Exhibition Shows How Cranbrook Helped Pioneer the Cross-Disciplinary, Craft-Based, Experimental Design and Art of Today

Most people know the highlights of the Cranbrook Academy of Art’s storied 90-year history, from its campus by Eliel Saarinen to its role as a breeding ground for the stars of mid-century modernism. But in June, the school launched the results of a four-year deep-dive into its own history — in the form of a sprawling exhibition and a 600-page book, both called With Eyes Opened — that offer a much more nuanced view of Cranbrook’s game-changing influence. We spoke with curator Andrew Blauvelt about 6 artworks and objects by varied practitioners that were part of that narrative.
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A Group Exhibition in Detroit Celebrates the Design Scene of a City That Was ‘Never Normal’

Never Normal — a timely group exhibition by the Detroit gallery Wasserman Projects, in collaboration with the local collective Form&Seek — examines how, post-pandemic, our relationships with our domestic spaces are transforming in ways we might not even be able to fully understand yet. But it also celebrates a city that in many ways has long considered itself an outlier.
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These Four Designers Have One (Very Important) Thing in Common

Their disciplines may be wildly diverse — elaborate rope vessels, hand-woven textiles, minimalist furniture made from stone and metal, maximalist furniture made from aluminum foil — but there's one thing Doug Johnston, Begum Cana Ozgur, Nina Cho, and Chris Schanck all have in common, and we asked them all to talk about it.
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Jesse Moretti at Patrick Parrish

A New Series of Pastel Paintings, Inspired by Floridian Hues

In her colorful, line-driven work, Brooklyn artist Jesse Moretti has always explored the space between flatness and dimensionality, and the visual tricks one might use to create a bridge between the two. Her newest body of work, called FOAME — on view through Sunday at Patrick Parrish Gallery in New York — does so quite literally: In many of her paintings, Moretti employs a shadowy line that creates the illusion of a canyon carved into the wood — or, perhaps, like an X-acto knife cut into foam.
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Nina Cho, Furniture Designer

“One of the most important ideas in traditional Korean architecture and art is the aesthetic of emptiness — practicing the beauty of the void,” Nina Cho explains to me over the phone from her studio in Detroit, where she recently set up camp after graduating from Cranbrook. “In painting, the unpainted portion is as important as the portion that was painted; it’s about respecting the emptiness as much as the object.” Cho should know; she was born in the States but grew up in Seoul, and as a child she would often visit traditional Korean architecture sites. But little did she know the impact those visits would have on her future career.
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Aleksandra Pollner, Furniture Designer

After her family bribed their way out of Poland in the ’80s, says Aleksandra Pollner, they spent years moving from place to place to place. Her perpetually uprooted childhood, she says, had a profound effect on her work as an adult: “I became fascinated with boundaries, tensions, spaces in between, where we find solace, and what makes us feel comfort and discomfort,” concepts that inspired pieces like her new Line and Circle table and Ma floor light, pictured above.
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