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Mid-Century Modern Drawings

MID-CENTURY MODERN STYLE

Organically shaped, clean-lined and elegantly simple are three terms that well describe mid-century modern American furniture. The style, which emerged primarily in the years following World War II, is characterized by pieces that were conceived and made in an energetic, optimistic spirit by creators who believed that good design was an essential part of good living.

Postwar American architects and designers were animated by new ideas and new technology. The lean, functionalist “International Style” architecture of Le Corbusier and Bauhaus eminences such as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Walter Gropius had been promoted in the United States during the ’30s by Philip Johnson and others. New building techniques, such as “post-and-beam” construction, allowed the International-style schemes to be realized on a small scale, in open-plan houses with long walls of glass.

Materials developed for wartime use became available for domestic goods and were incorporated into mid-century modern furniture designs. Charles and Ray Eames and Eero Saarinen, who had experimented extensively with molded plywood, eagerly embraced fiberglass for, respectively, pieces such as the La Chaise and the Womb chair. George Nelson and his design team created Bubble lamp shades using a new translucent polymer skin. Harry Bertoia and Isamu Noguchi devised chairs and tables built of wire mesh and wire struts. Materials were re-purposed: the Danish-born designer Jens Risom created a line of chairs that used surplus parachute straps for webbed seats and backrests.

As the demand for casual, uncluttered furnishings grew, more mid-century designers caught the spirit.

Classically-oriented creators such as Edward Wormley, house designer for Dunbar Inc., offered such pieces as the sinuous Listen to Me chaise; the British expatriate T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings switched gears, creating items such as the tiered, biomorphic Mesa table. There were Young Turks such as Paul McCobb — who designed holistic groups of sleek, blonde-wood furniture — and Milo Baughman, who espoused a West Coast aesthetic in lushly upholstered chairs and sofas with angular steel frames.

As the collection of vintage mid-century modern American furniture on 1stDibs demonstrates, this period saw one of the most delightful and dramatic flowerings of creativity in design history.

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Style: Mid-Century Modern
'Supermercado de Arte' - Signed 1960's Lithograph by Guillermo Silva
Located in London, GB
A fabulous artist signed lithograph print by the famous Colombian artist Guillermo Silva. This dates from circa 1965. This framed print is a great size, and has a lively and playf...
Category

Mid-20th Century Colombian Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Selection of Figural Line Drawings or Gallery Wall by Miriam Kubach
Located in Atlanta, GA
Selection of figural line drawings or gallery wall by Miriam Kubach, American, circa 1950s. They have been framed in vintage gilt frames. Top row, left to right, they measure 14.75" ...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

Male Nude Conte Crayon Drawings
Located in Atlanta, GA
Male nude conte crayon drawings, artist unknown, American, circa 1960s. They are priced at $450 each. updated
Category

1960s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

Modern Pop Art Elizabeth Taylor Portrait in Pencil by Bill Nelson, 1980
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Stunning early master illustration by Bill Nelson in his preferred medium of colored pencil for the Cincinnati Magazine cover story (May 1980). Framed. Taylor stares out at the view...
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Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paint, Paper

1960s Pop Art Abstract Expressionism Trompe l'Oeil Collage by Salvatore Grippi
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Gorgeous collage of layered paper resembling bundles of falling textile but in two dimensions. A great melding of the figural and the completely abstract as well as various media. Si...
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Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Selection of Figural Line Drawings or Gallery Wall by Miriam Kubach
Located in Atlanta, GA
Selection of figural line drawings or gallery wall by Miriam Kubach, American, circa 1950s. They have been framed in vintage gilt frames. From left to right they measure 20" H x 17" ...
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1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

WALTER SPIES Insect Watercolour Paintings [Set of 4]
Located in Hawthorne, CA
A SET OF 4 delicately painted watercolours of insects by known artist WALTER SPIES. Matted and framed, presented in perfect condition. These are all originals and signed by the artis...
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Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Charcoal Drawing on Ingrès Paper Signed Marceau Constantin Original, F113
Located in Lyon, FR
Charcoal drawing by the French artist Marceau Constantin (1918 - 2017). Drawing on ingres paper representing two characters in shades of black and grey creating a fascinating light a...
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1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Mid-Century Modern Framed Salvador Dali Signed Drypoint Etching 1960s Grenade
Located in Keego Harbor, MI
For your consideration is a captivating, framed, Surrealist drypoint print, entitled "Grenade et l'Ange," signed by Salvador Dali, dated 1969 and numbered 158/200. In excellent condi...
Category

1960s Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Stunning Modernist Architectural Rendering, Drawing by G.F.Hahn
Located in Buffalo, NY
Original MCM Pen and ink architectural study for a Palm Springs Residence (unbuilt). Framed and signed; J.H.Hahn, Reminiscent of the famed Dinah Shore house in Palm Springs by archit...
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Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Lead

Mid Century Portrait of Woman Carrying a Child Signed Heffner
Located in Plainview, NY
A exquisite Mid-Century Modern portrait oil on canvas of a young woman carrying a child. The outfits of the woman and child have vivid colors in pink and blue while the rest of the p...
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Mid-20th Century Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Canvas

Imperial Hotel Plans by Frank Lloyd Wright
Located in Tokyo, JP
Imperial Hotel built in 1923 is one of the most famous and classic hotel in Tokyo, Japan. These are the plans of Imperial Hotel by Frank Lloyd Wright.
Category

Early 20th Century Unknown Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Mid Century Modern Etching 28/35 Signed IN the Style of Miro Calder
Located in National City, CA
For your consideration a beautiful etching decoration in the manner of Miro/Calder. Signed lower right corner in pencil 28/35. I have another etching from the same artist in other li...
Category

1980s Unknown Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

Delicate Signed Pointillist Color Drawing by Dora Maar, circa 1960
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Pointillist composition by Dora Maar. Signed in the lower right corner. Authenticity stamp of the auction that took place in 1998 in Paris. 20th century, undated. In good ori...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Raymond Moretti Original Painting, circa 1950s
Located in Arles, FR
Original painting by Raymond Moretti. Raymond Moretti was a French abstract painter. Combining Hebrew letters, lines, and colors he created dynamic works, which flit in and out of ab...
Category

1950s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paint

Charcoal Drawing by Jan Yoors
Located in New York, NY
Jan Yoors, (Belgium, 1922-1977). Signed, dated and framed. The charcoal drawings are a series that Yoors began in the late 1940s, and which he continued throughout his career. They s...
Category

1970s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

1960 Violets Flowers Chart wall Poster
Located in Ceglie Messapica, IT
A rare 1960s flower chart poster with a solid wood frame. In very good conditions.
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

Charcoal Drawing by Jan Yoors
Located in New York, NY
Jan Yoors, (Belgium, 1922-1977). Signed, dated and framed. The charcoal drawings are a series that Yoors began in the late 1940s, and which he continued throughout his career. They s...
Category

1970s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Original Artwork for a Detective Newspaper Strip, 1940s
Located in St Annes, Lancashire
Amazing artwork for a story by James Hadley Chase. So evocative of this period. We have found no record of this story, A Medal for Miss Lantis, so presumably it was never publishe...
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1940s English Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

"Bathers," Oil Pastel Drawing with Four Nude Male Figures in Blue and Green
Located in Philadelphia, PA
This lovely drawing of four nude male figures looking into the distance contrasts realistic human figuration with a highly abstract setting in bold blues, greens and burnt sienna. Th...
Category

1970s Chilean Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paint

Mid-Century Modern Salvador Dali Michelangelo Portrait Etching
Located in Keego Harbor, MI
A marvelous etching produced by Dali in 1968 and published by the Collector’s Guild on New York City titled Michelangelo from the Immortals of Art series. Signed in plate Pour C.G. D...
Category

1960s Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Trio Black/White Ink Drawings
Located in North Miami, FL
A whimsical trio or ink drawings having an abstract inspiration. Mid-Century styled. Two are signed but illegibly to me.
Category

Late 20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Gio Ponti Sketch "Disegni per Vasi Incrociatifor", Italy, 1950
Located in New York, NY
A wonderfully whimsical concept drawing of two vases. Authentication papers from the Gio Ponti archives provided with drawing.
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1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Dora Maar Pointillist Surrealist Landscape Double Drawing Framed
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Pointillist composition by Dora Maar. Authenticity stamp of the auction that took place in 1998 in Paris. Second Drawing on the back. 20th century, undated. In good original ...
Category

20th Century French Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Dora Maar Pointillist Surrealist Landscape Drawing
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Pointillist composition by Dora Maar. Authenticity stamp of the auction that took place in 1998 in Paris. 20th Century, undated. In good original condition, with minor wear co...
Category

1970s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Leonard Maurer Tempera Painting of Woman, 1955
Located in St.Petersburg, FL
Beautiful tempera on board by Leonard Maurer (1912-1976), painted in 1955. Portrait of a woman, exaggerated, with great depth and expressive character. A great example of 1950's Wash...
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1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paint

Pierre Francois Vaysse Framed Abstract Drawing
Located in Chicago, IL
Pierre-Francois Vaysse framed modern abstract drawing, Belgium circa 1970. Intricate ink drawing on paper of abstract / surreal anthropomorphic figure. Black ink on beige background....
Category

1970s Belgian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Aluminum

Pierre-Francois Vaysse Framed Abstract Drawing
Located in Chicago, IL
Pierre-Francois Vaysse framed modern abstract drawing, Belgium circa 1970. Intricate ink drawing on paper of abstract / surreal anthropomorphic figures. Black ink on beige background...
Category

1970s Belgian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Aluminum

Pierre-Francois Vaysse Framed Abstract Drawing
Located in Chicago, IL
Pierre-Francois Vaysse framed modern abstract drawing, Belgium circa 1970. Intricate ink drawing on paper of abstract / surreal anthropomorphic figure / face. Black ink on beige back...
Category

1970s Belgian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Aluminum

Pierre-Francois Vaysse Framed Abstract Drawing
Located in Chicago, IL
Pierre-Francois Vaysse framed modern abstract drawing, Belgium circa 1970. Intricate ink drawing on paper of abstract / surreal anthropomorphic figure. Black ink on beige background....
Category

1970s Belgian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Aluminum

John Joseph Owens Male Nude Figure Study, 1909, Charcoal on Paper, Signed, Dated
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Owens, John Joseph (American/West Virginia 1887-1931), Model Portrait Study, signed and dated 1909, charcoal on laid paper and pen and ink. Provenance: artist's estate Dimensions...
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Early 20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

George Crionas' "Central Park Tycoon" Lithograph
Located in Los Angeles, CA
An extraordinary George Crionas' "Central Park Tycoon" Lithograph 162/200 from the 1960s and in great condition. The piece is titled "Central Park Tycoon" and depicts a clown reading...
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1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Brass

Pablo Picasso Drawing 'Pours Mes Chers Fiancés,' 1956
Located in Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire
A unique vintage Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881-1973) framed, signed and inscribed title page of L'Oeuvre Gravé de Picasso dedicated and presented to the engaged couple Sylvette David ...
Category

1950s European Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Crayon, Paper

Original Graffiti from the 1970s on paper "Sculls & Bones" by Adolf Frankl
Located in Vienna, AT
Original drawing, felt-pen, signed, framed, 21 x 30 cm Early Graffiti from the 1970s.
Category

Mid-20th Century French Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Felt

Yasse Tabuchi Modern Ink Drawing
Located in Roma, IT
Yasse Tabuchi Modern ink drawing Signed and dated “Tabuchi 65” In the back “Tabuchi 1965” Yasse Tabuchi studied art history at the University of Arts of Tokyo from 1946 to 1951. ...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Jean Cocteau Drawing, circa 1952, France
Located in Girona, Spain
Jean Cocteau drawing, circa 1952, France. Original frame. Signed. Dedication by Jean Cocteau - Bacchus - Gallimard, Paris, 1952 - 218 pages. Very good vintage condition. Jean Co...
Category

Mid-20th Century French Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

Illustration Painting Attributed to Al Corn
By Al Corn
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
Illustration painting attributed to Al Corn, unsigned, drawn for Mans World Magazine.
Category

1960s North American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Mixed Media Abstract Print by French Artist Robert Ladou
Located in Chicago, IL
A mixed media abstract print by French Artist Robert Ladou (1929-2014), 1970s. Reference #DC957. Robert Ladou is a Postwar & Contemporary painter who is recognized worldwide for ...
Category

1970s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Dora Maar Pointillist Framed Colored Drawing, circa 1960
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Pointillist color drawing by Dora Maar. Authenticity stamp of the auction that took place in 1998 in Paris. Drawing on cream white paper. 20th Century, undated. Framed an...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

Rodolfo Nieto, Three Wise Men, Mexican Ink on Paper Drawing
Located in Mexico City, MX
A fine ink on paper drawing depicting the three wise men by Mexican artist Rodolfo Nieto, circa 1970. The drawing has a wood frame and beige passe-partout. Signed on bottom right....
Category

1970s Mexican Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

1952 Framed Portrait of Young Man by Clyde Carter
Located in Miami, FL
Signed Clyde Carter and dated '52, here you have a framed and double matted portrait of a young man featuring a side and front facial view.  Wonderful colors, done in crayon and past...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

1970 Child Pixie Cut Portrait Etching Black and White Headshot Signed
Located in National City, CA
Etching Black and white child portrait headshot etching Signed upper right corner. Hard to read. Aluminum frame with original glass. Preowned vintage condition. Oxidation on pap...
Category

1970s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Original Watercolor Rendering for 1956 Living Room by Leleu Firm, Paris
Located in Philadelphia, PA
This gorgeous, original elevation watercolor, depicting a living room wall centered around a baronial fireplace with deep red brick hearth, was prepared for Madame Keime by the celeb...
Category

1950s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Watercolor

Brassaï Lithography Hand Signed
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Lithography hand signed by Brassaï from the book "Historie de Marie" Limited edition of 12/ 126 With some moisture spots Framed on a 20th century frame with museum glass. ...
Category

1940s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Thomas Downing Watercolor, 1958 "Washington Color School"
By Thomas Downing
Located in Sharon, CT
Rare very early watercolor by this famous 'Washington D.C. Colorist'(from the group of Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland and Gene Davis), signed and dated L.L. 1958. Matted and framed in ...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paint

1979 Two Italian Design Drawings for a Desk Light Project by Luciano Mattioli
Located in New York, NY
Dated industrial hand drawings, highly collectible Italian Product Design for a desk light project, realized without ruler in pastels and gouache on black cardboard, by the Italian d...
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper, Crayon

Dora Maar Pointillist Framed Colored Drawing, circa 1960
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Pointillist drawing by Dora Maar. Authenticity stamp of the auction that took place in 1998 in Paris. Black ink on cream white paper. 20th Century, undated. Framed and si...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

Dora Maar Pointillist Framed Colored Drawing, circa 1960
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Pointillist color drawing by Dora Maar. Authenticity stamp of the auction that took place in 1998 in Paris. Drawing on cream white paper. 20th Century, undated. Framed an...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

Clapera Maya Framed Artwork from Spain, circa 1950
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Drawing artwork from Spain, circa 1950 Painted by Clapera Maya in Spain. Framed and hand signed. In original condition, with minor wear consistent of age and use, preserving...
Category

1950s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

Modern Pastel Painting Signed and Dated Brindisi '75
By Remo Brindisi
Located in Roma, IT
Modern Italian pastel painting Signed and dated Brindisi '75 N.B. The painting is sold without frame.
Category

1970s Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Untitled Abstract by French Artist Robert Ladou
Located in Chicago, IL
A mixed media work on paper by French Artist Robert Ladou, presented under Museum Glass in a custom champagne frame. Circa 1970s. Robert Ladou is a Postwar & Contemporary painter...
Category

1970s Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

Mid-Century Modern Italian Abstract Painting on Paper, 1970s
Located in Prato, IT
Mid-Century Modern Italian abstract painting on paper with wooden structure from 1970 The paper of the paint shows little signs of wear consistent with age and use as it is visible ...
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

Pregnancy Drawing by Albert Radoczy
Located in Pasadena, CA
Albert Radoczy was a master at exploring the female form. His wife was his main model. Throughout his career, his drawings and paintings depicted women with images ranging from rea...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

"Seated Male Figure, Beachside," Early Drawing by John B. Lear with Cabana
Located in Philadelphia, PA
Finely and beautifully captured, this depiction of a shirtless young man, handsome and pensive, sitting on the beach with his legs grasped in his arms, is a rare, early drawing by Jo...
Category

1960s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Modernist Etching, Artist Proof, c. 1962
Located in Chicago, IL
A chic modernist artist proof etching by James Quentin Young depicting a kneeling figure rendered in bold geometric shapes and embellished with gray and black ink. Frame is original ...
Category

1960s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Midcentury Abstract Expressionist Ink Drawing on Paper by Salvatore Grippi, 1953
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Midcentury abstract expressionist ink drawing on paper by Salvatore Grippi, 1953. Measures: 9.5" x 12". This ink wash figurative abstract Expressionist piece on paper is signed by...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Original Monochrome Fashion Drawing, Pat Kerr, 1946
Located in St Annes, Lancashire
Wonderful pen and ink drawing by Pat Kerr, 1946. So evocative of the 1940s. On card. Unsigned. Presented in the original black lacquer frame. Drawn for A & C Kay, New Bond S...
Category

1940s English Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Paper

Clapera Maya Guilt Framed Artwork from Spain, circa 1968
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Drawing artwork from Spain, circa 1968 Painted by Clapera Maya in Spain. Framed and hand signed. In original condition, with minor wear consistent of age and use, preserving...
Category

1960s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Drawings

Materials

Wood, Paper

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