Thursday, August 2, 2012

Century of the Child: Growing by Design, Part I

Jens S. Jensen, Boy on the Wall, Hammarkullen, Gothenburg, 1973, Mural made from silver gelatin print, Gift of the artist to MoMA.
Century of the Child: Growing by Design, 1900-2000
July 29-November 5, 2012

It's been said that when you die your entire life flashes before your eyes. Those longing for a look back but under less dire circumstances should consider visiting the sixth floor of MoMA.

Organized by Juliet Kinchen with the help of Aidan O'Connor this ambitious survey of 20th century design for children is a large scale overview of childhood and all the designers, teachers, critics, and social activists who have contributed to the world of the “citizens of the future.”

Spanning seven galleries on the museum's sixth floor, the exhibit of over 500 items includes toys and games, animated films, clothing, safety equipment, school products, furniture, books, and photographs. Children have been central to the concerns of many of the world's best architects, designers, educators, artists and writers and, it should be noted, MoMA has always been committed to highlighting these creative social activists.

A related publication, Century of the Child, Growing by Design, 1900-2000, has been published in hardcover for $60 and is also available as an Apple iBook, one of the Museum's first, through iTunes for $29.99.

A series of films, Unaccompanied Minors; View of Youth in Films From the Collection, has been organized by Associate Curator Anna Morra  (Roy and Niuta Titus Theaters, through August 14).
Peter Opsvik (Norwegian, born 1939)
"Maxi" set including Trip Tripp chair
1972; Lacquered Beech Wood

This oversized table and chairs are front and center on the 6th floor, created by the designer to give adults the experience of a child's perspective.

Visitors can sit on either chair and feel like a character in Gulliver's Travels.
Norwegian designer Peter Opsvik perched in one of the two Tripp Trapp chairs of his "Maxi" set. Aidan O'Connor, MoMA's Curatorial Assistant, Department of Architecture and Design. Ms. O'Connor worked with Curator Juliet Kinchin organzing the exhibition.
The Kiddies' Motor Wheel
Courtesy of WPA Film Library

This delightful looped film is projected on the wall of the entrance lobby and is worth pausing to watch. It's only a minute and 20 seconds.
MoMA curator Juliet Kinchin organized the exhibition.
Entering the first gallery, a large vitrine is filled with Kindergarten material based on the educational theories of Friedrich Froebel.

Froebel's system departed from traditional methods of schooling in emphasizing things rather than words, and doing rather than talking or memorizing.
This group of early twentieth-century workbooks, which demonstrate Froebel's educational philosophy, were all prepared by women, whom many reformers at the time considered more effective than men as educators of infants.

The distinct visual character of each workbook indicates the range of creative expression that was possible using Froebel's "Gifts."
Froebel's educational tools comprised a system of nonrepresentational objects and materials that aimed to develop recognition and appreciation of natural harmony. These early exercises in abstraction and pattern making paralleled many of the activities adopted by progressive schools of art and design in the early twentieth century.
Workbooks demonstrating kindergarten Occupations (paper folding, pricking, sewing, drawing, cutting).
Intent on fostering the curiosity and creativity of young minds, Froebel devised a series of twenty
playthings, which he called "Gifts." These objects formed the core of his pioneering model of early- childhood education, anchoring sessions of play that were either directed by teachers or instigated by the children themselves. Gifts included crocheted balls in different colors, wooden building blocks, geometric shapes, and steel rings that could be arranged in numerous temporary configurations.
In mir ist Gott — Ich bin in Gott (God is in me — I am in God), 1924
From a series of blackboard drawings produced by Rudolf Steiner during lectures on anthroposophy
Chalk on paper
Théphile-Alexandre Steinlen (French, 1859)
La Rue (The Street),1896
Laura Kriesch (Hungarian, 1989-1966)
Child's embroidered bodice, c. 1909
Cotton embrodery on linen
Jessie Marion King
Painted wood and leather

The simple, modest form of this dollhouse echoed the interest of Arts and Crafts architects in cottage-style housing and vernacular architecture.

The design of children's toys and books was an area in which many women excelled, chief among them King, who attended the Glasgow School of Art, where she later taught bookbinding, embroidery, and ceramic decoration. Her childlike vision and understated technical brilliance in many mediums were widely publicized in the new international arts magazines started in the 1890s and early 1900s. By using fairy-tale iconography throughout her work, King encouraged children to enter and share her make-believe world.
Jessie Marion King

The Frog Prince Nursery Room panel was done by Jessie King, the artist who did the doll's house.
William Eugene Drummund
High chair, 1902
Designed for the architect's residence in River Forest, Illinois
Paul Jackson, MoMA's Senior Publicist, is too tall for any high chair.
Edison Company
Public School Exercises and Recreations
Filmed at P.S.1, The Bronx

Throughout the exhibition there are wonderful film clips from the various eras.
Tadd New Methods in Education: Art, Real Manual Training, Nature Study (1899)

Tadd emphasized freehand blackboard drawing as combining physical and intellectual exercise in a way that reflected children's natural tendency to express themselves through movement. He described this method as "a process that unfolds the capacities of children as unfold the leaves and flowers; a system that teaches the pupils that they are in the plan and part of life ... illustrated in every natural thing."
View of Gallery installation.
Daisy McGlashan and her daughters in reform dress; c. 1915

Dresses designed by McGlashan, who studied in the Department of Embrodery at the Glascow School of Art.
M. A. Wilson, Child's
Coat / Educational
Needlecraft, 1911-14

Students in the Glasgow School of Art's department of embroidery were encouraged to develop their creativity and to make highly individual clothes, for themselves and their children, using basic stitches and cheap materials.

From 1899 the innovative curriculum was extended to school- children, thanks in part to the publication of Educational Needlecraft (1911).
This textbook, used in schools throughout Britain and the Empire into the 1950s, led girls through carefully graduated exercises that paralleled the way the school's older art students were taught. The teaching was both practical and stimulating to individual artistic expression, equipping women and girls with the means to shape their everyday surroundings.
Heinrich Kühn
German, 1866-1944
Child Blowing a Soap Bubble
c. 1910
Bromoil transfer print
Teaching materials conceived and commissioned by Maria Montessori, c. 1925
Painted wood and various materials
János Vaszary, Woven Wall

The Gödöllő arts and crafts community supported itself with a weaving school that in 1907 became a national training center. At its height, the school employed about forty weavers, many of them children, the most skilled of whom executed designs by established artists, such as this example by János Vaszary.
The bold, flattened treatment of the figures made reference to Vaszary's painterly preoccupations, but translated into the form of a woven textile—a vernacular tradition with a rich history in Hungary.

The involvement of artists in modernizing craft traditions and easing rural poverty was central to the ideology of the Arts and Crafts movement.
Alessandro Marcucci
Italian, 1876-1968

Chairs and desk from a school for the rural poor
1914; wood
Closeup of top of desk. You can see the inkwell and the slots for writing instruments.
Gustav Klimt
Hope, ll
Oil, gold, and platinum on canvas

In Klimt's painting of a pregnant woman, the unborn child as an embodiment of hope is complicated by unsettling allusions to death in the form of a skull nestling on her belly.

The anxiety suggested by this imagery mirrored the intellectual and aesthetic ferment of Vienna at the turn of the century, above all the emergence of psychoanalysis and Sigmund Freud's explorations of the child within every adult persona.

The ornate decoration in Hope, ll nearly overwhelms its surface. Klimt was committed to craftwork, and was among the many artists of his time who combined archaic traditions--her Byzantine gold-leaf painting--with a modern psychological subject.
Sophie Taeuber-Arp (Swiss, 1889-1943)
King Deramo (left) and Sentry (right) Puppets from König Hirsch

The basic elements of Taeuber-Arp's puppets, turned pieces of wood, are round and sculptural, linked by ring-bolt joints that allow movement in many directions.

Puppets were a traditional and popular art form that appeared in many avant-garde circles between the world wars, some growing out of studio projects and others conceived within groups of friends as both a playful diversion and an outlet for new ideas on design, choreography, and performance.

Taeuber-Arp, the only woman on the committee of the avant-garde Swiss Puppet Theater, established in 1918, was able to draw on her experience as a performer at Dada soirees and as a dancer at Rudolf von Laban's school of movement in Zurich.
Gerrit Rietveld (Dutch, 1888-1964)
Child's Wheelbarrow
painted wood
Ladislav Sutnar (American, born Bohemia, now Czech Republic)
c. 1930
Turned and painted wood
Joaquin Torres-Garcia (Uruguayan, 1874-1949)
Painted wood
Joaquin Torres-Garcia (Uruguayan, 1874-1949)
Painted wood
Ladislav Sutnar
American, born Bohemia (now Czech Republic)

Prototype for Build the Town Building blocks, 1940-43; Painted wood

In keeping with his commitment to modernist principles, Sutnar believed in the cognitive power of a visual language rooted in elemental shapes and color.

Building entire cities with blocks, he believed, would give children an awareness of form and structure that made direct reference to the simple, geometric volumes of functionalist architecture, while also giving a sense of the functional and aesthetic interrelationships between different types of buildings in the modern city. He described these nonverbal, object lessons, taught through play, as "mental vitamins necessary for the right development of a child."
Heinrich Kühn
German, 1866-1944
Child Blowing a Soap Bubble
c. 1910
Bromoil transfer print
Installation shot of Antonio Rubino's Side chair and bedroom panel.
Antonio Rubino (Italian, 1880-1964)
Side chair, 1921
Element from a room designed for the son of an artist's friend; Painted wood

Rubino's taste for the grotesque, the bizarre, and the fantastic is evident in the surreal form of this chair and decorative panel on the theme of "the bad child," which were both part of a unique children's room.

A self-taught artist best known as a children's illustrator and founder of one of the most influential children's magazines in Italy, Corriere dei Piccoli, Rubino is also known for his transgressive approach to design.
Antonio Rubino (Italian, 1880-1964)
Il bimbo cattivo (The bad child)
Bedroom panel
Tempera on canvas
Giovanni Prini (Italian, 1877-1958)
Painted wood
Gerrit Rietveld
High Chair

In 1919 Rietveld tackled a familiar childhood object, the high chair, in a way that embraced the exploratory, open-ended play associated with the kindergarten movement.

Like an inquisitive child, he went through a process of breaking down the form of the chair into basic shapes and then rearranging and reconstructing them into a form that differed radically from conventional furniture of the day.

The final design features a distinctive joint created from three intersecting pieces of wood, with which he had been experimenting for several years.
The curved chair in the foreground:

Charles Eames (American, 1907–1978)
Eero Saarinen (American, born Finland. 1910–1961)
Chair from Crow Island School, Winnetka, IL
c. 1940
Plywood and wood

The green chair in the background:

KIT NICHOLSON (British, 1904–1948)
Child's chair for Pioneer Health Centre, Peckham, London; 1935
Kaj Bojesen (Danish, 1886-1958)
Numbers Toy Cart
Wood, rope
Lance Esplund, Bloomberg's art critic.

On the wall:
Alvar Aalto (Finnish, 1898–1976)
Child's chair (model N65), 1935

Reclaimed from schools in Finland by Artek's Second Cycle project
Painted wood
John G. Rideout (American, 1898-1951)
Harold L. Van Doren (American, 1895-1957)
Skippy-Racer, c. 1933
Steel, paiint, wood and rubber
Barbara Hoffman, arts editor of the New York Post.
Children's kimonos, c. 1930

The curious assemblage of visual references in the patterns of these boys' kimonos, classic items of Japanese ceremonial clothing, reflects the tensions created by the speed of the country's modernization and the military aspirations of the Meiji rulers.
On the kimono at left, the motifs include an armored car, a military plane, and Norakuro (a popular cartoon dog) walking with a boy scout over a background of Japanese flags
and silhouetted battle scenes featuring cavalrymen, marching troops, and soldiers with their arms raised in a "Banzai!" gesture, all framed by the sprockets of a motion-picture film.
Detail showing the manga character Norakuro.
Detail of toy soldiers and blocks. Detail showing Japanese bomber planes.
Toy airplane
Graf Zeppelin toy dirigible
c. 1930
Iron alloy, aluminum, enamel paint and decals
SAKAMPF board game, 1933
Note the 13 little toy soldiers

After 1933 all German children's organizations were outlawed except for the officially sanctioned Hitler Youth, and the paramilitary overtones of German youth culture became more pronounced.

These priorities were reinforced by Nazi-themed toys, books, and board games such as SAKAMPF,
which prepared young boys for an active role in the armed forces and encouraged them to identify with the Nazi insignia and ideology.
Detail of playing pieces: soldiers with swastikas on their arms.
Book by Niels Brordersen (German, 1895-1971), Richard Grune (German, 1903-1983) and Andreas Gayk

Kie Rote Kinderrepublik
Pierre Pinsard (French, 1906-1988)
Little Black Stories for Little White Children
Layout from Pierre Pinsard's Little Black Stories for Little White Children.
F. Touzat (French)
Mon Alphabet (My Alphabet), c. 1940
Ink on paper
Even Donald Duck and Goofy went off to war.
On the left, The Gremlins, by Flight Lieutenant Roald Dahl (and I hope you read that carefully!)

On the right:
Pascual Recluta (Easter recruits), 1943
A Walt Disney Production booklet distributed in Cuba
Lucienne Bloch
American, born Switzerland, 1909-1999
Study for The Cycle of a Woman's Life, 1935

Bloch's design for a mural in a high-rise women's jail in downtown Manhattan made a bid for the heartstrings and possible reform of its audience with a diverse group of children innocently playing marbles on a city sidewalk.

This scene was conceived as part of The Cycle of a Woman's Life, a series of murals whose theme was approved by the inmates themselves. On such depictions the New York Times commented in 1938, "The first leit-motif that strikes the observer is a preoccupation with the quieter, gayer sides of life in this city. .... Children, trees, dogs and flowers squeeze in everywhere, like grass cracking through cement."
Ben Shahn
American, born Lithuania, 1898-1969

Children of Destitute Mountaneer, Arkansas, 1935
Gelatin silver print
Figli della Lupa (Sons of the Wolf) tableware set

Outside the classroom, Italian children could eat and drink from tableware designed to whet their appetites for future service in the colonies.

In the mid-1930s the Richard Ginori porcelain factory manufactured children's plates, cups, and saucers decorated with stereotypical colonial imagery—the ubiquitous palm tree, camel, pith
helmet, rifle, tank, and huts flying the Italian flag—that celebrated Italy's conquests in North and East Africa.
Child's Utility vest, 1942-1952
Abram Games (British, 1914-1996)
This Child Found A Blind, poster designed for the War Office, London Lithograph, 1943
Conversation moderated by MoMA's Director Glenn Lowry with Juliet Kinchin, and Anne Morra, Associate Curator, Department of Film.

Ms. Morra was on hand to discuss the many films which wil be shown through August in MoMA's Titus Theater 1. "Cinema," she said, "has always embraced children going back to the 1870s."

Shown under the sobriquet of "Unaccompanied Minors: Views of Youth in Films from the Collections," these movies and clips have a central theme: "tracing the image of the emancipated child as central subject, as witness, and sometimes as a catalyst for change."

Check the museum's website for a schedule.
Invited members of the press as well as various MoMA staffers. You should recognize many of these people by now.
Glenn Lowry ... and his dapper socks.
Lowry joking that his own children could be the "ragamuffins" on view in many of the films.

Other names for the soot-smudged children include gamins, guttersnipes, street rats, or lil' imps.
Gallery Five is a trip down memory lane for many of us — filled with everything from a slinky toy to a teak wooden monkey.

The child's chair, c. 1955, is designed by Harry Bertoia, born Italy (1915-1978)
Alexandra Lang blogged the first story about this exhibition for T Magazine.
Richard James (American, 1914-1975)
Betty James (American, 1918-2008)
Slinky, 1945, steel

If your slinky ever made it all the way down your staircase ... well, you had better luck than I did.
Kay Bojesen
Danish, 1886-1958

Monkey toy, 1951
Teak and limba wood
Charles Eames (American, 1907-1978)
Ray Eames (American, 1912-1988)
Hang-It-All coat rack, 1953
Enameled metal and painted wood
Bruno Munari (Italian, 1907-1998)
ABC con fantasia (ABC with imagination), 1960
Plastic and cardboard
V.E.B. (Erfurt, Germany)
Child's typewriter, c. 1952
Children's sandals, 1950
Leather with crepe soles

The Start-rite brand of children's fitted footwear was developed to allow tiny feet to grow through the late teenage years without damage. In 1952, the company invested in special lasts (the molds used to build a shoe) specifically for children's sizes, available in multiple width fittings and based on the natural shape of a child's foot.
Ernó Goldfinger
British, born Hungary, 1902-1987
Good Toys, 1966
Kristen Vedel
Danish born 1923
Child's chair, 1957
Beech plywood with lacquered seat
Barbie Dream House

The first Barbie doll, designed by Ruth Handler and inspired by Germany's Lilli doll, was launched at the New York Toy Fair in 1959. Barbie's first Dream House of 1962, strikingly modern in appearance compared with her subsequent and current dwellings, is a cardboard studio apartment that when folded and closed could be carried, using a handle on top, like a suitcase.

With no kitchen in sight and contemporary paper furnishings (including a hi-fi, television, and hip, minimalist furniture) for the child to assemble, it provided Barbie with a youthful, modern environment to support an independent lifestyle.
On the wall as we enter Gallery six there is a huge mural. This section explores different ways in which children and consumer culture have exerted power over each other from the 1960s through to the end of the 20th century.

Zdeněk Němeček (Czechoslovak, 1931–1991)
Sputnik play sculpture, c. 1959
Photograph by Petr Karsulin; Dolce Vita Magazine, Prague
Child's NASA flight suit, c. 1988
Polyester and cotton

Space-patrol helmet, c. 1954

Big Boy's metallic Insulair space-pilot boots,
c. 1950

In the photo above, Boys in a Glasgow back court show off their Christmas presents, which include astronaut suits and Spacehoppers. This is the photo reproduced on the cover of the exhibition catalogue.
Spacehopper, 1969

Outer space, a new frontier, was sufficiently vast
and mysterious to allow designers and toy manufacturers near-complete freedom of imagination and creation.

One rather enigmatic but popular product was Mettoy's Spacehopper. These bright orange vinyl bouncing balls, with kangaroolike faces and handles that resemble horns, are said to have been inspired by children bouncing on fishing buoys in Norway.
Pee-Wee's Playhouse

Pee-wee's Playhouse, the Saturday-morning children's television show broadcast on CBS from 1986 to 1991, was quirky and ambitious, the only such program of its time to mix live action, animation, and puppetry, and it was celebrated by critics and the press for its design as well as for its original writing, music, and performances.

The show's dense and lively format was complemented by the set itself, which was primarily the work of production designer Gary Panter, with Wayne White and Ric Heitzman. The playhouse, like the narrative structure it housed, is best characterized as pastiche, inhabited by a cast of regular characters created from everyday objects.
Cameras, keyboard, turntable, plastic, metal, wood, machinery parts, and additional found objects.
Clocky, 1987
Foam, wood, plastic, metal springs, and paint
Desgned by Gart Painter, American, born 1950
Globey, 1987
Foam, plastic, fabric, metal and paint
Playhouse wall panel with door, 1987
Vinyl, wood, brass rivets, metal hinges and paint

That's art writer Larry Qualls in front of the set. "The show," he said, "should be approached first through its objects, not the catalogue. Even at more than 500 pieces, densely displayed, it does not seem crowded. I could have seen another 500 — and how many times can you say that about any exhibition."
Film clip from Pee-wee's Playhouse

The show enraptured young viewers, shaking up conventional ideas about domesticity, consumerism, friendship, and imagination and illustrating, according to Pee-wee's creator, Paul Reubens, that "it's okay to be different. Not that it's good, not that it's bad, but that it's all right. Tell kids to have a good creative...question things."
H. Naoto (Japanese, founded 1970)
Goth Lolita ensemble with matching Angry doll
Fall 2008

The Lolita style is a Japanese fashion subculture characterized by extreme cuteness, including childlike, feminine dresses with pinafores, ruffles, and bows, loosely inspired by nineteenth-century French dolls, Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865), and Victorian mourning dress.
Despite the style's reference to Vladimir Nabokov's 1955 novel, the young women who adopt it do not necessarily identify with the heightened sexuality these garments might broadcast to others; the name has been taken out of context and transformed — in this case with its own complex vocabulary and various iterations that include gothic and punk Lolita (which tend to embrace the creepy along with the cute). That's Goth Lolita's Angry doll accessory on the right.
Ariella Budick, Arts Writer for the Financial Times.
Yoshitomo Nara
Japanese, born 1959

"Fuck"/girl getting yelled at
1992-2000; Crayon on paper
Artist PC Smith, who writes for Art in America.
TWAN VERDONCK (Dutch, born 1979)
NEO HUMAN TOYS (The Netherlands, est. 2003)
Tummy (warm belly monkey), from the Boezels collection, 2001
Fake fur, cotton, and cherry stones

The Boezels are artificial pets that encourage sensory exploration and reduce anxiety by emphasizing physical contact. The seventeen soft toys that make up the series are suitable for all children, as well as for adults with developmental disabilities.

Verdonck, inspired by the Dutch therapy snoezelen (from snuffelen [to seek out] and doezelen [to relax]) from the 1970s), incorporated unique sense-specific characteristics in each toy, using heating pads, mirrors, sound, scent, and durable textiles with different tactile properties. The shapes are abstract, leaving freedom for imaginative interpretation and narrative. The first Boezels were developed and produced with the input of patients at a mental healthcare facility in Hapert, the Netherlands.
Renate Müller
German, born 1945
Hippopotamus theraputic toy, 1969
Canvas and leather

Using a limited material vocabulary of jute, leather, and wood, Müller creates high-quality therapeutic toys and environments for active play, in simple handmade designs that combine robust forms (ideal for strength, balance, and motor exercises) with refined tactile qualities, bright colors, and straps or handles to encourage physical engagement.

Müller started training in toy design in 1964 and soon launched a career in design for children with special needs, establishing her own studio in 1978. Her series of burlap beasts (including the Hippo shown here), which she promoted as "coarse but cute," became popular in kindergartens and hospitals throughout Germany.
Katsuji Wakisaka
Japanese, born 1944
Child's dress, 1975

Textile in Nekky pattern, designed by Katsuji Wakisaka (1972)
Cotton and pewter buttons
Marimekko (Finnish, Founded 1951)
Lautturi child's overalls, 1966

Textile in Noppa pattern, designed by Vuokko Eskolin-Nurmesnieme (1953)
Cotton and plastic buttons

The Finnish textile and fashion house Marimekko has produced bold geometric prints that, when applied to durable, comfortable, unisex clothing, build on the principles of the early-twentieth-century movement to liberate children from restrictive clothes.

Marrimekko helped to underwrite this exhibition.

Left: Möhöfantti elephant toy and pattern sheet, 1959
Cotton, stuffing and wooden wheels

Right: Porsasurhea pig toy, 1959
Cotton and stuffing

Starting in the late 1950s Marimekko produced and sold plans for simple, abstract animal dolls that parents and children could make themselves, using leftover fabric scraps and wooden spools as wheels.

Armi Ratia, Marimekko's founder, was among the luminaries who joined Victor Papanek and R. Buckminster Fuller at the Helsinki Design Lab (HDL) in 1968, a global summit on the changing role of design and the emerging needs of a new world.
Libuse Niková
Czechoslovak, 1934-1981
Inflatable giraffe, c. 1970
Novoplast plastic
Marc Berthier
French, born 1935
Ozoo 700 desk, 1967
Polyester and fiberglass
These toys, made by children in Makuleke Village, South Africa, are evidence of how in impoverished
areas children often become designers themselves, ingeniously producing their own playthings from the detritus of modern industry. The organization Sharing to Learn makes possible a cultural exchange between the Makuleke children and children in classrooms across the United States and around the world, allowing global peers to share their favorite books and participate in collaborative experiments such as gardening and making toys like these.
The young children in Makuleke Village, South Africa, with their handmade toys.
Tshepo Limpopo is 16 and from the South African village of Makuleke. He and his friends made many of the wire objects on display. Aidan O'Connor with Denise Ortiz, the "spiritual" mother of Tshepo Limpopo. South African laws are complicated but Tshepo lives with the Ortiz family in Connecticut. Ms. Oritz is an educator by profession and took part in a research project, Sharing to Learn, in Tshebo's village in South Africa.
Seymour Chwast, American, born 1931
Growing By Design
The 40th International Design Conference in Aspen, 1990
Offset lithograph
Unknown, South Africa
Doll made by village preschool teachers with found materials, 2011
Sabine Breitwieser, MoMA's Chief Curator of Media & Performance Art. A wall papered with pages from The Whole Earth Catalogue (first published in 1968) is used as a backdrop for displaying photographs relating to social justice.
Lorraine Schneider
American, 1925-1972

War Is Not Healthy For Children and Other Living Things, 1966, Lithograph

Schneider, an artist and mother of four, created this poster for a print show at Pratt Institute in New York, out of concern that her eldest son would be drafted. The rough composition, with its simple sunflower and childlike scrawl, became the logo for Another Woman for Peace, an organization led in the present day by her daughter, Carol, and went on to become one of the most ubiquitous protest images of the Vietnam War era.

"Man will learn to resolve his inevitable difference through nonmilitary alternatives," Schneider said at a United States disarmament conference in 1972. "But it is up to us, the artists ... to prepare the emotional soil for the last step out of the cave."
The exhibition catalogue, Century of the Child: Growing By Design 1900-2000; $60.

By Juliet Kinchin and Aidan O'Connor with essays by Tanya Harrod, Medea Hoch, Francis Luca, Amy Ogata and Maria Paola Maino, the catalogue features over 400 illustrations.
Ernő Rubik, Rubik's Cube 1974
(Of course it's on view in the exhibition)

Rubik, an architect and design professor based in Budapest, originally created his iconic cube to help his undergraduate design students think geometrically, but this simple yet notoriously difficult puzzle has become the world's best-selling toy.

More than 400 million have been sold, as well as millions more illegal knockoffs. An elegant interior mechanism allows
for 43,252,003,274,489,856,000 possible positions; the toy comes without instructions, but the goal seems universally intuited by anyone who picks it up. It appeals to an innate desire to create order from chaos, for children and adults alike.

I always tell Jeff Hirsch, who does the wonderful layouts for my photojournals, that putting them together is exactly like solving one of these torturous puzzles. Trust me, this has been no different!
Keith Haring Pull Toy, $75.
Etch-A-Sketch, $18.
Have fun!
Click here for Part 2 of Century of the Child: Growing by Design, 1900-2000.

Text and photographs © by Jill Krementz: all rights reserved.