Most of the exhibition files from the late 1930s and early 1940s do not have photographs in them, but when they do, these images give a window into the times. This Swedish Arts and Crafts exhibition from 1944 actually still feels quite modern (I’m looking at you, IKEA). Some of the wall label drafts for the show are also quite interesting — Label IV reads:
Before the war, “Swedish Modern” was a word which had a clear cut definition in design terms. It was style-forming and came about through the determined esthetic (sic) and social efforts to raise the standard of the Swedish home and to improve the taste for a better quality of design… But “Swedish Modern” is not an original style created in the last couple of decades. It is an inheritance coming from a rich tradition of beauty loving people who are courageous enough to break away from the swaddling clothes of the past to entertain new forms for living.
Areca Roe is a MFA graduate from the University of Minnesota’s Department of Art, with a concentration in photography and minor in Museum Studies. Areca completed her project involvement in Fall 2011, and has subsequently been involved with the University as an artist in residence at the University’s Bell Museum of Natural History.