Modern Meals and Women in Motion at the Wolfsonian Museum

Through September 29, 2013.

Modern Meals examines how advances in technology and design reshaped the places where food was produced, sold, cooked and eaten from the turn of the century into the post-1945 period, while Women in Motion displays images of physically active women produced by governments, fitness advocates, advertisers, and artists in Europe and the United States during the first half of the twentieth century. Both exhibitions examine aspects of everyday culture in the early 20th century that are still of great concern today, from the methods through which our foods are produced, to equal access to athletic opportunities for women.

“Modern Meals examines how people in the U.S. began eating foods that were mass-produced in the first half of the 20th century. Images and artifacts from The Wolfsonian’s collection illustrate the movement of food from the field, to the factory, supermarket, and kitchen table, in order to explore how modern technology, design, and business practices created new meanings for food and eating in this era,” said Jon Mogul, assistant director for research and academic initiatives. “These objects reveal how the values of industrial efficiency and design shaped the landscapes and intimate spaces of food production and consumption.” The exhibition also demonstrates, however, that even amidst these changes, American culture continued to idealize generations-old practices in the fields and the home.

Women in Motion focuses on increased participation for women in sports and other kinds of physical activity in the early 20th century, as strides were made towards political, economic, and social equality in the United States and Europe. Artwork, advertisements, magazine covers, and political propaganda at the time celebrated the athletic and healthy woman as a source of sex appeal, a basis of national vigor, and – sometimes – as a figure of individual self-fulfillment. Drawn from the collection of The Wolfsonian, Women in Motion invites viewers to consider the messages about femininity conveyed by these images.

The Wolfsonian–FIU
1001 Washington Avenue
Miami Beach, FL 33139

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