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Life Arts    H4'ed 8/10/12

A Fair to Remember: The Impact of World's Fairs on Progress in Art and Science

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John La Farge, American. Lunette, ca. 1880–82. Stained glass.
John La Farge, American. Lunette, ca. 1880–82. Stained glass.
(Image by The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York)
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Inventing the Modern World: Decorative Arts at the World's Fairs, 1851--1939 is a groundbreaking exhibition of stunning decorative arts which premiered at world's fairs from 1851 to 1939.

Inventing the Modern World: Decorative Arts at the World’s Fairs, 1851–1939
Inventing the Modern World: Decorative Arts at the World’s Fairs, 1851–1939
(Image by Nelson Atkins Museum of Art)
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Co-organized by the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City and the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, the exhibition includes nearly 200 pieces of furniture, metalwork, ceramics, glass, textiles, and jewelry.

Georges Fouquet, French. Corsage Ornament, ca. 1923. Jade, onyx, diamonds.
Georges Fouquet, French. Corsage Ornament, ca. 1923. Jade, onyx, diamonds.
(Image by The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York)
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Many of these extraordinary objects have never before been seen in the United States.

The exhibition at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art runs through August 19.

Nelson-Atkins Museum with Claes Oldenburg shuttlecock sculpture
Nelson-Atkins Museum with Claes Oldenburg shuttlecock sculpture
(Image by Nelson-Atkins Museum)
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The exhibit will re-open at the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on Oct. 13, 2012. In 2013 it will travel to New Orleans and North Carolina.

Rene Jules Lalique, French. Brooch, ca. 1903. Gold, glass, enamel, sapphire.
Rene Jules Lalique, French. Brooch, ca. 1903. Gold, glass, enamel, sapphire.
(Image by The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore)
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Decorative arts are on loan from 10 private collections and 36 museums (11 international and 25 from the US) including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, MOMA, Art Institute of Chicago, The Victoria & Albert Museum in London, Designmuseum Danmark in Copenhagen, and the Musee des Arts Decoratifs in Paris. 

India (Brahmapur). Chair and Stool, ca. 1855. Ebony, ivory.
India (Brahmapur). Chair and Stool, ca. 1855. Ebony, ivory.
(Image by Victoria & Albert, London)
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Many of the items on display are nearly, or over, 100 years old, yet seem strikingly modern.

Keller Freres, France. Pitcher, 1900. Gilded silver.
Keller Freres, France. Pitcher, 1900. Gilded silver.
(Image by Musee des Arts Decoratifs)
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This decorative, modern-looking screen appears to be a masterpiece of oil painting.

Hashio Kiyoshi, Japanese. Morning Sea, 1915. Wood screen.
Hashio Kiyoshi, Japanese. Morning Sea, 1915. Wood screen.
(Image by Allentown Art Museum, Pennsylvania)
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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, (more...)
 

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