Frederick Kiesler

Frederick Kiesler, Author, Lisa Phillips, Author W. W. Norton & Company $45 (168p) ISBN 978-0-393-02670-2
Romanian-born Kiesler, who died in 1965, was a versatile and imaginative designer, artist and architect whose work included designs for lipstick tubes, stage sets (e.g., the American premiere of Sartre's No Exit in 1946), galleries, an ``endless'' house, ``Galaxial'' portraits composed of configured painted pieces of cardboard, and a prize-winning shoe store in Buffalo, N.Y. Illustrated by more than 200 photographs of his work, six essays by various art historians (including Phillips) ponder Kiesler's avant-garde multi-media oeuvre for the first time in book form in English, in conjunction with an exhibit at New York's Whitney Museum. Altogether, words and pictures make a convincing case for Kiesler's fruitful heterodoxy (``Form does not follow function, function follows vision,'' he wrote, and, ``Whatever your course when choosing the proportions for a window, avoid one thing--the normal''), though documentation of the influences, range and reception of Kiesler's humane experimentalism is somewhat repetitious. (May)
Reviewed on: 02/27/1989
Release date: 03/01/1989
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