When chemists first successfully extracted aluminum from the earth in the mid-19th century, the raw element was as precious as gold. Today we take this ubiquitous material for granted, though aluminum allows for nearly every facet of modern life through its use in architecture, industry, and flight. This exhibition, drawn from NOMA’s permanent collection, explores the changing role of aluminum in twentieth-century design.
“Saturn” punch service
Spun aluminum with lacquered wood handles
12 x 20 in.
Museum purchase, William McDonald Boles and Eva Carol Boles Fund
“Aero-art” Service Cart for Douglas DC3 Aircraft
Aluminum, Bakelite, and rubber tires
37 x 15 x 32 in.
Gift of Dr. Ronald Swartz and Ellen Johnson