This object is currently on display in room 302 as part of The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s. There are 6 other images of this object. See our image rights statement.

 

See more objects with the tag interior, streamlined, furniture, modernism, storage, offices, writing, muted colors.

Object Timeline

1933

  • Work on this object began.

2006

  • We acquired this object.

2007

2014

2015

2017

Desk (USA), ca. 1933

This is a desk. It was designed by Paul T. Frankl and manufactured by Frankl Galleries. It is dated ca. 1933 and we acquired it in 2006. Its medium is lacquered wood, painted canvas, chromed metal. It is a part of the Product Design and Decorative Arts department.

This fine example of early 1930s streamlined furniture would be the first piece of furniture designed by Paul T. Frankl to enter the museum’s collection. The desk demonstrates a different aesthetic from the sometime silver- and gold-leaf decoration of Frankl’s early work.
At the time of proposed acquisition, the museum’s collections in general—and the furniture collection in particular—do not have much American modernist design from the early 1930s. Highlights include the Jazz punch bowl by Viktor Schreckengost (1931), Ruba Rombic glassware (ca. 1928), and a side chair by Wiener Werkstätte member Joseph Urban (ca. 1930). Frankl’s furniture also relates well to the museum’s collection of skyscraper designs and drawings by the American architect Hugh Ferriss.

This object was featured in our Object of the Day series in a post titled The Horizontal Line in American Design.

This object was donated by Anne Ehrenkranz and Joel Ehrenkranz. It is credited Gift of Joel and Anne Ehrenkranz.

Our curators have highlighted 11 objects that are related to this one. Here are three of them, selected at random:

  • Drawing, Desk
  • graphite; ruled border in graphite, red color pencil support: tracing paper.
  • Gift of Donald Deskey.
  • 1988-101-704
  • 4658 Desk, 1946
  • walnut veneer on pine, tubular steel, leather, perforated sheet aluminum.
  • Promised gift of George R. Kravis II.
  • 7065.55.2015

Its dimensions are

H x W x D: 76.2 x 121.9 x 53.3 cm (30 x 48 x 21 in.)

Cite this object as

Desk (USA), ca. 1933; Designed by Paul T. Frankl (American, b. Austria, 1886–1958); lacquered wood, painted canvas, chromed metal; H x W x D: 76.2 x 121.9 x 53.3 cm (30 x 48 x 21 in.); Gift of Joel and Anne Ehrenkranz; 2006-24-1

In addition to The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s, this object was previously on display as part of the exhibitions Making Design and Looking Forward/ Looking Back: Recent Acquisitions in 20th- and 21st-Century Design.

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18706395/ |title=Desk (USA), ca. 1933 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=28 May 2017 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>

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