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Why do people shop IKEA across the world? Accessible design and reasonable prices come to mind.
But look closer and you find fun lurking in the meatballs, carefully arranged domestic tableaux and winding trails of discovery. Beauty has long dominated the world of art and design, but playful, joyful fun has long motivated artists and creators, delighting the minds of consumers and patrons alike.
By closely examining the notion of an aesthetics of fun embodied in the Serious Play exhibits reveals its hidden smile.
In this session, by tracing a history of playful art and whimsical design, David Thomas from the University of Colorado’s College of Architecture and Planning argues for the prevalence, and importance of play in our creative institutions and industries.
Whether you are a midcentury design buff or just discovering this dynamic era and style, join us in a three-session summer course for a deeper look at Serious Play: Design in Midcentury America.
Learn more about the social, cultural, and political context of midcentury America, ponder the ways in which “fun” informs the design aesthetic of this period, and get playful with an exploration of iconic midcentury chairs.
Presented by David Thomas.
More information about session presenters available here.
Additional course sessions include:
• Moderns before Midcentury (June 15, 2:30-4 pm)
• Playful Seriousness (July 13, 2:30-4 pm)
$60 DAM members/$70 nonmembers for all three sessions; $22 DAM members/$25 nonmembers for single sessions.
Tickets are now on sale for members, and will be available to nonmembers April 8, for the full course or individual sessions.
Please note: General admission tickets which include entrance to the exhibition, are sold separately.
Adult programs are supported by William Randolph Hearst Endowment for Education Programs, Nancy Benson Education Endowment Fund, CenturyLink Endowment, James Kelley and Amie Knox Education Endowment Fund, and the citizens who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD).
Image: Herbert Bayer’s Kaleidoscreen installed in Aspen, Colorado, about 1957. Herbert Bayer Collection and Archive, Denver Art Museum. Photograph courtesy Denver Art Museum.