Skip to main content

Mid-Century Modern Photography

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.

2
412
60
3
to
344
400
75
436
138
38
15
2
410
63
28
285
Height
to
Width
to
436
137
133
33
14
475
475
475
404
191
125
63
63
85
30
26
18
17
Style: Mid-Century Modern
Set of 6 Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt set of 6 from Photogravures from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserv...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Isamu Noguchi Archive Photography of Sculpture, circa 1955
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Archive Photography of Isamu Noguchisculpture. Printed, circa 1970. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserving a beautiful patina. The phot...
Category

1950s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

Gucci Italy Chrome Picture Frame with Nautical Design
Located in Atlanta, GA
Sophisticated picture photo frame by Italian designer Gucci. Chromed metal with a nautical design featuring an anchor and boat fittings. Rich high gloss walnut wood back and easel. M...
Category

1980s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Metal, Chrome

Audrey Hepburn, Original Vintage Photograph by Vincent Rossell, Paris, 1962
Located in Devon, GB
From the Personal collection of Audrey Hepburn Audrey Hepburn on the set of 'Paris When it Sizzles,' Paris, 1962 by Vincent Rossell Vintage gelatin silver print Photographer's c...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Other

Man Ray Sefportrait Black and White Photography
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Selfportrait photographed by Man Ray. A posthumous print from the original negative circa 1970 by Pierre Gassmann. Gelatin silver bromide. Framed in a 19th century frame with m...
Category

1970s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Steve Schapiro Signed Original Photograph Print of John F. & Jacqueline Kennedy
Located in Studio City, CA
A historic and iconic, richly toned, silver gelatin print or image by prolific and renowned photographer Steve Schapiro. Signed, stamped and titled ("John and Jacqueline Kennedy W...
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Luce Contemporary Photography, circa 2019
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Photography made by the Spanish contemporary artist Luce. Printed, circa 2019. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserving a beautiful patina. ...
Category

2010s Spanish Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

Los Angeles Then and Now by Rosemary Lord Book
Located in North Hollywood, CA
Los Angeles Then and Now Lord, Rosemary. Los Angeles, the City of Angels, is the capital of show business, where to be young and beautiful is to have it all. Los Angeles Then & Now...
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

The Queen Mother and Her Family by Trevor Hall, British Heritage Hardcover Book
Located in North Hollywood, CA
The Queen Mother and Her Family by Trevor Hall, British Heritage Press, 1981. With a forward by the Duke of Beaufort, this is a wonderful book full of the most interesting photos fr...
Category

Late 20th Century English Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Audrey Hepburn, Original Vintage Photograph by Vincent Rossell, Paris, 1962
Located in Devon, GB
From the Personal collection of Audrey Hepburn Audrey Hepburn on the set of 'Paris When it Sizzles,' Paris, 1962 by Vincent Rossell Vintage gelatin silver print Photographer's c...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Other

Space Age White Glass Picture Frame
Located in Atlanta, GA
Lovely 1960s Space Age arctic white glass picture photo frame. Round domed design with kinetic effect. Easel and back covered with black paper. The picture photo frame can only be pl...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass

Max Bill Limited Edition Hand Signed Photolithography, 1977
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Max Bill photolithography signed by, circa 1977 Stamped rotogravure reproduction of series by Bolaffiarte. Limited edition of 5000. Exemplary number 4912.
Category

1970s European Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Steve Schapiro Iconic Signed Silver Gelatin Print "Three Men, New York 1961"
Located in Studio City, CA
A historic and iconic, richly toned, silver gelatin print or image by prolific and renowned photographer Steve Schapiro. Perhaps his most famous image. Signed, stamped and titled ...
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography, 1942
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt Photogravure from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. Photography number 30. 'Chrysanthemum Leucanthemum. Gemeine Wucherblume, große Maßliebe, M...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Italian 1970s Noel BC Chrome and Brass Picture Frame
Located in Atlanta, GA
Charming Italian 1970s picture photo frame by Noel BC. Chrome and gilded brass metal geometric design with striped design. Easel and back in purple velvet and glass protection on the...
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Metal, Brass, Chrome

Moholy-Nagy Self Portrait Black and White Photogram
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Self Portrait by László Moholy-Nagy, 1922. A posthumous print from the original negative circa 1970. Stamped by Foto Moholy-Nagy and Galerie Khlim. Excellent print and framed ...
Category

1970s German Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

François Gilot Lithograph from 'Portraits of a Woman' Series, 1951
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
François Gilot original lithograph from 'Portraits of a Woman' series. From the poetry book "Pages d'Amour" by André VERDET, editions Raison d'être, 1951, printed by Mourlot in 3...
Category

1950s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

1950s Male Physique Original Proof Sheet
By Bob Mizer 1
Located in Palm Springs, CA
A very unusual piece of 1950s Male Physique Art. This beautifully framed by Boris Beverly Hills floating original proof sheet, contains a collection of 13 images (2 illustrations and...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Manolo Hugué Archive Photography of Sculpture, Free Shipping
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Manolo Hugué archive photography of sculpture. Printed, circa 1960. Framed on a 19th century frame with museum glass. Gelatin silver bromide print. We offer free worldwide sh...
Category

1960s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Silver

Fritz Henle Vintage Photo Gravure, circa 1950
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Vintage photo gravure by the photographer Fritz Henle, circa 1950. Wood frame with passepartout and high quality glass. The frame on the photos is just an example, it will be fram...
Category

1950s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

François Gilot Lithograph 'Portrait of a Woman', 1951
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
François Gilot original lithograph 'Portrait of a Woman'. From the poetry book "Pages d'Amour" by André VERDET, editions Raison d'être, 1951, printed by Mourlot in 366 copies. ...
Category

1950s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography, 1942
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt Photogravure from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. Photography number 1. 'Aconitum. Eisenhut. Junger Sproß in 6 facher Vergrößerung.' In o...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Rauschenberg, Limited Edition Photolithography, circa 1970
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Photolithography by Rauschenberg, circa 1970. Stamped rotogravure reproduction of series by Bolaffiarte. Limited edition of 5000. Exemplary number 4798. The photolithography...
Category

1970s European Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

François Gilot Lithograph 'Portrait of a Woman', 1951
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
François Gilot original lithograph 'Portrait of a Woman'. From the poetry book "Pages d'Amour" by André VERDET, editions Raison d'être, 1951, printed by Mourlot in 366 copies. ...
Category

1950s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

John & Robert Kennedy Photo Print "the Brothers" #345 by Jacques Lowe Studio One
Located in San Diego, CA
Iconic John & Robert Kennedy hard back gelatin matte print "The Brothers" by Jacques Lowe for Studio One, circa 1969; the print is #345. It was taken on July 14, 1960 at the Biltmore...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Set of 6 Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt set of 6 from Photogravures from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserv...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Set of 3 Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt set of 3 from Photogravures from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserv...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Italian 1970s Aluminum Wood Picture Frame
Located in Atlanta, GA
Lovely 1970s picture photo frame, manufactured by Italian designer Umberto Mascagni, Bologna Italy. Gilded aluminum and Formica imitating flamed walnut wood. Metal easel at the back....
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Metal, Aluminum

Original B&W Vintage NY Times Press Photo from 1972
Located in Søborg, DK
Original New York Times press photo from 02.29.73. Showing Oxford Street London in 1972. At that time Oxford Street was one of the most dangerous streets in Europe. Mounted in a vi...
Category

1970s English Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Bruce of LA 1950s Original Male Physique Photograph
Located in Palm Springs, CA
From an important collection of male physique and beefcake, printed in the 1960s, signed by the studio when Mr. Bruce Bellas aka Bruce of LA was alive. This image is of very handsome...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Other

Man Ray Flowers Photography
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Flowers photographed by Man Ray in 1934. A posthumous print from the original negative circa 1970 by Pierre Gassmann. Gelatin silver bromide. Frame not included. In good origi...
Category

1970s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Late Mid-Century Fashion Photography by Peter H. Fürst, Professionally Framed
Located in Salzburg, AT
Peter H. Fürst born 1939 in Austria - died 2018 in Germany From 1954 to 1957, Fürst completed an apprenticeship in his parents' company and studied at the higher graphic teaching ...
Category

Early 2000s Austrian Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Silver Leaf

"Marilyn Monroe in Bathing Suit and Lucite Heels" Print by Bert Reisfeld, 1953
By Bert Reisfeld 1
Located in New York, NY
Bert Reisfeld, "Marilyn Monroe in Bathing Suit and Lucite Heels", 1953 PR photo shoot for "How to Marry a Millionaire". Printed from the original 8"x10" transparency on Fujiflex Crys...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Space Age Black Glass Picture Frame
Located in Atlanta, GA
Stylish 1960s Space Age black glass picture photo frame. Round domed design with kinetic effect. Easel and back covered with black suede paper. The picture photo frame can only be pl...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass

Mark Rothko Archive Photography, circa 1970
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Archive photography of MArk Rothko painting. Printed, circa 1970. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserving a beautiful patina. The photog...
Category

1970s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

Maurice Cloche Signed Photograph from the the Verneuil Collection 'Male Nude'
Located in Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Maurice Cloche (French, 1907-1990) 'Male Nude' Silver gelatin print, 1930 Image: 6.5 x 8.5 in / 16 x 21.5 cm. Mat: 14 x 17 in / 35.5 x 43 cm. Signed verso. Provenance 'The Verne...
Category

Mid-20th Century French Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography, 1942
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt photogravure from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. Photography number 87. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and us...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Paul Strand Stamped Platinum Photographic Print the Family, Luzzara, Italy, 1953
By Paul Strand
Located in Studio City, CA
An iconic image titled The Family, Luzzara, Italy (The Lusettis) by the famed American photographer Paul Strand - perhaps one if not the most recognizable of his images. This pla...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass, Paper

1960, Futuro House, La Défense, Paris, Jean Ribière
Located in Perpignan, FR
Jean Ribière, renowned photographer, was National Vice President of the A.N.J.R.P.C. (National Association of Journalists Reporters Photographers and Filmmakers), whose President was...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Italian 1970s Tortoiseshell Lucite Picture Frame
Located in Atlanta, GA
Elegant 1970s Italian picture photo frame. Rounded shape with clear and tortoiseshell (tortoise) pattern Lucite framing. The easel at the back is also in clear Lucite. No visible mak...
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Acrylic, Lucite, Plexiglass

Erotic Photograph of a Woman with a Violin
Located in Rochester, NY
A sensual black and white to slightly sepia tone interior photographic image of a partially nude woman holding a violin, pencil signed dated and numbered by artist on right side of m...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Man Ray Photography of Georges Braque
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Man Ray Photograph of Georges Braque, 1930. A posthumous print from the original negative in 1977 by Pierre Gassmann. Gelatin silver bromide, framed on a 19th century frame wit...
Category

1930s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography, 1942
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt Photogravure from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. Photography number 30. 'Chrysanthemum Leucanthemum. Gemeine Wucherblume, große Maßliebe, M...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

The Art Institute of Chicago Archive Photography of Joan Miro Drawing, 1971
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Black and White Photography of Joan Miro Drawing "Figures en Estat de Metamorfosi" from 1931 by The Art Institute of Chicago, 1971. In original condition, with minor wear consiste...
Category

1970s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography, 1942
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt Photogravure from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserving a beautiful...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography, 1942
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt Photogravure from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. Photography number 76. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and us...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Irving Penn, Photogravure Black and White, 1947
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Irving Penn photogravure plate page 21 inside the book Phographie 1947 edited by Arts et Metiers Graphiques. Measures: 17 x 22.5 cm Black wood framed size: 40 x 50 cm Copyri...
Category

1970s European Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Space Age Green Glass Picture Frame
Located in Atlanta, GA
Stylish 1960s Space Age green glass picture photo frame. Round domed design with kinetic effect. Easel and back covered with black paper. The picture photo frame can only be placed i...
Category

1960s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass

Early 20th Century French Antique Aviation Collage Composition
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Early 20th century French antique collage composition. Images of different aviation's models. By unknown artist. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and us...
Category

Early 20th Century French Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

Archive Photography of Henry Matisse Painting, 1959
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Black and White Photography of Henry Matisse, 1959. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserving a beautiful patina. Materials: Paper Dime...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Moholy-Nagy "In the Swiss Canton Tessin" Photography
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
In the Swiss canton Tessin black and white photography by László Moholy-Nagy, 1925. A posthumous print from the original negative in 1973. Stamped by Foto Moholy-Nagy and Galerie...
Category

1920s German Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Man Ray Archive Photography of Smoking Device
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Man Ray Archive photography of smoking device in 1959. Printed in 1970 by Studio Marconi. Framed on a 19th century frame with Museum Glass. Gelatin silver bromide 24 x 18. Ma...
Category

1950s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography, 1942
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt Photogravure from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. Photography number 74. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and us...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Joan Miró Archive Photography of "Personage" Sculpture, circa 1960
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Archive photography of Joan Miró "Personage" Sculpture. Printed, circa 1960. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserving a beautiful patina. ...
Category

1960s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Glass, Wood, Paper

Man Ray Photography of Lee Miller
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Portrait of Lee Miller photographed by Man Ray, circa 1930. A posthumous print from the original negative by Pierre Gassmann, circa 1970. Framed in a 19th century frame. Bor...
Category

1970s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Brassaï "Paris de Nuit" 1933 Book
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
'Paris de Nuit' book by Brassaï. Published by Arts et Métiers Graphiques in Paris (France). First edition of 1933 with 60 plates in rotogravure (héliogravure) after photographs b...
Category

1930s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Karl Blossfeldt Black White Flower Photogravure Botanic Photography, 1942
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Karl Blossfeldt Photogravure from the edition of the book 'Wunder in der Natur' in 1942. Photography number 25. Cotula coronopifolia. Krähenfublätterige Laugenblume. Fruchtköpfche...
Category

1940s Spanish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Archive Photography of Henri Matisse 'Still Life', 1954
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Black and white photography of Henri Matisse 'Still Life' from 1954. In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserving a beautiful patina. Material...
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Photography

Materials

Paper

Recently Viewed

View More