Object Timeline

1989

  • Work on this object began.

2017

2019

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Poster, Herman Miller Collection, 1989

This is a Poster. It was designed by Linda Powell. It is dated 1989 and we acquired it in 2017. Its medium is offset lithograph on dull coated paper. It is a part of the Drawings, Prints, and Graphic Design department.

Intense, saturated colors and the unmistakable silhouette of an Eames molded plywood lounge chair distinguish this commemorative poster. Linda Powell designed the poster to mark a gift of iconic Herman Miller furniture pieces to the Henry Ford Museum in 1989. The posters were given to guests invited to the opening.
Running along the upper portion of the poster is a strip of black furniture silhouettes. Dwarfed by the Eames chair's colors and size, the silhouettes illustrate other famous Herman Miller products featured in the gift. Powell depicts these pieces in a diminuitive scale, as if glimpsed from a distant assembly line, while the plywood chair, perhaps finished and ready to ship, takes center stage.
The poster's riotous color palette underscores the celebratory nature of the event and the important connection between American design and industry in the 20th century. The link between Herman Miller, Inc. and the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation, made literal by the gift, belies the shifts in economics and American manufacturing keenly felt in Michigan. Powell's design is important as much for the narrative it references as for its graphic qualities and would be a strong addition to the Drawings, Prints & Graphic Design department.

This object was donated by Linda Powell. It is credited Gift of Linda Powell.

Its dimensions are

94 × 61 cm (37 × 24 in.)

Cite this object as

Poster, Herman Miller Collection, 1989; Designed by Linda Powell (American, b. 1946); offset lithograph on dull coated paper; 94 × 61 cm (37 × 24 in.); Gift of Linda Powell; 2017-21-3

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/1108779015/ |title=Poster, Herman Miller Collection, 1989 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=19 May 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>