Join Cranbrook Art Museum for a fascinating examination of one of the most influential, yet overlooked, designers of modernism in America, Alexander Girard.
A one-day symposium in conjunction with the current exhibition, Alexander Girard: A Designer’s Universe, the U.S. debut of this career retrospective of Alexander Girard (1907–1993), one of the most influential designers of the twentieth century.
Girard worked across the fields of architecture, interior design, textiles, and graphics to create stunning environments that greatly enriched the visual language of mid-century modernism. Girard returned color, texture, decoration, the handmade and even opulence to classic modernism, making him an important touchstone for today’s artists and designers.
Historian Deborah Kawsky will introduce us to Girard’s Detroit days—from his modern design shop in Grosse Pointe to the architecture of his lesser known residences. Curbed’s national architecture critic, Alexandra Lange, will discuss Girard’s uncanny ability to bring structure to seemingly disparate things, from found artifacts to city streetscapes. Curator Monica Obniski will look at Girard’s prescient collection and use of folk art as an inspiration and antidote to modern design. A moderated discussion and question-and-answer session will follow the presentations.
Symposium: Uncovering the Fantasy and Magic of Alexander Girard
Saturday, July 22, 1-4pm
Free with Museum admission. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.
Future events include:
Alexander Girard Family Day
Saturday, August 12, 11am-3pm
A day filled with Girard-themed tours and activities! Kids under 12 are always free at Cranbrook Art Museum.
A Conversation in the Conversation Pit
Sunday, September 10, 1pm
Join us for a Girard-inspired conversation with legendary textile artist Ruth Adler Schnee and Historian Deborah Kawsky. Free with Museum admission.
This exhibition is organized by the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein, Germany. Global sponsors are Herman Miller and Maharam.