MoMA Collects Lustig

On Tuesday night, Elaine Lustig Cohen was invited to discuss the collection of Alvin Lustig materials in the Museum of Modern Art’s Library and Museum Archives. It was as much a celebration of Elaine‘s significance to the history of design as it was for the book we co-authored, Born Modern: The Life and Design of Alvin Lustig.

Hosted by Milan R. Hughston, Chief of the Library and Archive, and moderated by Juliet Kinchin, Curator, Department of Architecture and Design, thirty or so people gathered around the large tables to hear Elaine place the architectural and interior design photos, preliminary drawings and printed jackets, covers, brochures, stationery and other print ephemera in a personal and historical context.

The extent of the MoMA holdings surprised even Elaine, who had not seen some of the materials in decades – and had never seen a set of abstract sketches that appears to have influenced Lustig’s groundbreaking New Directions jackets. This was truly oral history in the making.

(And speaking of mid-century Modernism, read yesterday’s Nightly Heller about a new Ladislav Sutnar book, here.)

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