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Evelyn Ackerman(1924-2012): Mid-Century Modern Orange

 

Evelyn Ackerman, Seed Pods, dish enamel on copper, 1960
Evelyn Ackerman, Seed Pods, dish enamel on copper, 1960

Evelyn Ackerman was born in 1924 in Detroit, and died at the end of 2012 at the age of 88.  She worked in a multiplicity of mediums, from enamels on copper, to mosaics, tapestries, and woodcarvings.  Evelyn and her husband Jerome were a Dynamic Duo.  In 1949 they went to an exhibit at the Detroit Institute of the Arts, For Modern Living, which introduced them to post-war design, including Ray and Charles Eames.  As Jerome Ackerman relates:

“Evvy and I looked at each other,” recalls Jerome, “and very prophetically said, ‘If the Eameses can do it, maybe we can do it. Or at least, we can try.’”

They set up a studio together in 1950’s California, and became lifelong friends with another Dynamic Duo, Gertrud and Otto Natzler(who also favored orange).  I am inspired by the generative spark in the Ackerman duo,  and glad that they had a chance to witness a retrospective of their work, “Masters of Mid-Century California Modernism,” in 2010 at the Mingei International Museum in San Diego.

Many of Evelyn’s creations include splashes of orange, and the Cats mosaic table is enlivened with golden orange squares.

Evelyn Ackerman, Cats, mosaic table, 1954.
Evelyn Ackerman, Cats, mosaic table, 1954.

Evelyn worked with a mosaic workshop in Mexico, sending her colored drawings keyed to tile samples for artisans to set.  I see orange.  And it makes me happy, and I am grateful to Evelyn for such unabashed orange, and delight in creating.

 

More Orange Goodness at my Orange Tuesdays Pinterest Board.

Ackerman Modern: The Mid-Century Modern Works of Jerome & Evelyn Ackerman

Bonus Orange, evocative of Evelyn’s tapestry:  Pink Orange Red by Cocteau Twins(a band I listened to over and over again on my cassette Walkman in the 1980’s.  Note the hair.)

 

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