Thursday, August 19, 2010

Tour the Deco sights in Poland this fall!

Thanks to a link on the Art Deco Montréal website, I've just learned about a tour of Art Deco sights in Poland, taking place between Sept. 19 and October 1.

The tour includes visits to Warsaw, Krakow, Katowice and more. It's presented by the Polish Museum of America based in Chicago, and by Supertour DMC Ltd. in Warsaw.

Learn more...

Hot news from down under!

It hasn't made it to the official websites yet, but I understand that the book Melbourne Art Deco, – written by Robin Grow (the president of that Australian capital city's Art Deco & Modernism Society) with many photos by Deco master-blogger David Thompson  – has won 'Best Publication' in the 2010 Victorian Community History Awards. Congrats Robin and David!

Melbourne was the host city of the Ninth World Congress on Art Deco® held in April 2007.

Speaking of World Congresses (and cities south of the equator), mark your calendar now for the 2011 World Congress, taking place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from August 14 to 21 (hosted by the Instituto Art Déco Brasil), with a pre-congress in Sao Paulo, Brazil from August 11 to 13. (Brazil’s capital city until 1960, Rio enjoyed a belle époque in architecture, design, art and music during the first half of the 20th century, with Art Deco representing the arrival of Modernity.)

Take it from me, it's an amazing experience to spend a week surrounded by other Decophiles and seeing and learning about another city or country's Deco!

The World Congress on Art Deco® is a registered trademark of the Miami Design Preservation League, Inc., of Miami, Florida, USA. All rights reserved worldwide.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

The game of 'Deco' LIFE!

Okay, so this interactive game wasn't developed in the 1920s, but it's a fun way to experience the Roaring Twenties from the perspective of a middle-class English-speaking man or woman living in Montreal.

It's part of the 'Keys to History' series on the website of the McCord Museum in Montreal. It's got period music, excellent details, and a devilish sense of humour. Go on, give it a spin!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

What's your favourite Deco building in Toronto?

Visit our Facebook group page and join the discussion!

(Tim Morawetz's  favourite – a tough call since there's so many interesting ones – is Garden Court apartments.)

See Toronto's skyline circa 1930!

I just googled (digitally stumbled) upon a blog posting from Janet McNaughton that has some wonderful images of what Toronto's skyline looked like around 19230. Deco skyscrapers that we now perceive within a dense urban context were once landmarks on the skyline, with their pyramidally massed elevations that much more compelling. Check it out!

Three Deco-era skyscrapers: Canada Life (far left); Royal York Hotel (centre left); Canadian Bank of Commerce (centre right).

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Heritage preservation 1, Telecom 0 in Los Angeles

State-of-the-art technology was frequently celebrated in the Art Deco decoration.

So, isn't it a delicious irony that a bid by the U.S. cellular telephone company T-Mobile was denied its request to place four unsightly cell transmission towers atop the 1930-31 La Marquise Apartment Tower at 535 South Gramercy Place in Los Angeles, designed by architect Paul Kingsbury?

Click here for details.

Hollywood & Art Deco: a classic double-bill

The Art Deco style certainly made itself felt on the movies, both in terms of the sets and costumes of films from the period, as well as in the design of cinemas themselves. In fact, Art Deco cinemas can literally be found the world over, from the smallest towns to the biggest cities.

Fortunately, the city that's intimately associated with the movies – Hollywood –  has its own Art Deco society (Art Deco Society of Los Angeles).

In my opinion, ADSLA is one of the most organized and effective Deco societies, with a full slate of events (walking tours, lectures, movie showings and galas). As well, it monitors preservation issues in that city, as well as around the world.

If and when you travel to LA, be sure you check out ADSLA's website to see if there's an event you can work into your schedule!