Mid Century Modern Furniture
Modern furniture generally refers to furniture made during the late 19th Century through the present, which is largely influenced by modernism. The artistic and philosophical concepts of post-World War II idealism greatly influenced the design of the furniture as well.
The movement towards modernization gained steam with the French Revolution and the creation of the first French Academie Francaise Schools.
In response to the perceived failures of classical architecture, the style of furniture emphasized the rejection of tradition in favor of more cubist and linear forms.
This movement towards form following function became highly popular with a great variety of designs being produced throughout the century.
A defining characteristic of modern furniture is its rejection of the conventional and goes instead for new and novel ways of designing.
This movement toward novelty and change was highly sought after because many consumers felt it gave them a sense of dissatisfaction with the old styles and thought that a break from the molds and constraints of tradition would improve their homes and lives.
Many modernists were also accused of being puritanical for their rejection of tradition. Modernism was later criticized by many in the 20th Century for its materialism, excess, and mechanization.
Nonetheless, the style did gain popularity and many proponents of modern design felt that it was the best option at the time.
One of the most distinctive features of modern furniture is its use of clean lines, heavy textures, minimal ornamentation, and geometric shapes. Some modern furniture styles were inspired by the works of the Modernist artist Albert Einstein who loved the simplicity and beauty of nature.
His ideas of a void filled with unimaginable energy, boundless space, and geometrical precision attracted a great number of followers. His work has inspired generations of designers including the likes of Frank Lloyd Wright and Eero Saarinen.
As the movement towards a more organic and natural aesthetic gained strength, so too did the use of synthetic and factory-made products and materials. Many modern furniture designs are made from faux or authentic woods such as walnut or cherry.
Although some modern furniture pieces are hand crafted, most are mass-produced, meaning they are made from durable materials that may be strong but are also cheap and not unique.
The cheapness of these pieces allows mass production to produce large amounts of them, thus increasing the uniqueness of each piece. Due to this, a large number of designs are produced with similar appearances using the same designs by different companies.
The origins of modern furniture design can be traced back to the Romantic Period (the last period in history where Western art and architecture had significant influence).
During this time, furniture designs focused on natural materials and emphasized simple, elegant forms that were meant to accentuate the beauty and add functionality.
In turn, marcel styles such as those used by Rembrandt (the famous Dutch artist and painter) emphasized the reflective quality of his artwork. His vibrant paintings had an exotic appeal and were greatly sought after by people from all over Europe.
Following the Renaissance Period, the styles of the European Royalty began to change. Because of their wealth and power, the new Royalty wanted lavish and durable items that would not only endure for a long time, but would also be something that could be passed down through generations.
Thus, the focus turned to more luxurious open space furniture that did not focus on aesthetics. The emphasis became on pieces that were practical, able to withstand harsh weather conditions and were made of sturdy, natural materials.
These essential elements became key design elements that were incorporated into all forms of modern furniture including the ubiquitous modern sofa.
Marcel style modern furniture focuses on clean geometric lines. The clean, simple look creates a sense of order and structure while creating a modern interior design style that is simple and elegant.
Clean and geometric lines are often complemented by bold color patterns that mimic nature’s best colors. Bold hues such as bright red and yellow, paired with black and white, create a contemporary feel.
The result is a unique modern sofa that not only looks clean, but can fit in with contemporary decor and fits in well with any home.
Dining rooms have long been considered the heart of any home. In the mid-century, the focus was often more on practicality and function than beauty. However, in the last several decades, designers are once again beginning to pay attention to the beauty and utility of modern furniture.
As people have become more concerned with reducing clutter in their homes, dining rooms have long been considered the crowning glory of any modern home.
Traditional pieces are being updated for better functionality while classic, elegant pieces are becoming more popular due to the current interest in mid-century clean designs.