Develop an argument relating to how your subject relates to the period in which it was made.

History of Modern Design
Spring 2021
Writing Assignment #2

Research Paper
3 page research paper on a design object from one of the following exhibition pages on the Museum of Modern Art website:

Ornament and Abstraction:

Design for Modern Life:

Subject choices: Choose one design object as the focus of your research paper. The object could be classified under the “Architecture and Design” department. Although there are some printed materials in the Design for Modern Life section,Choose a three-dimensional design object as your subject.

While your primary subject needs to be a design object, you are encouraged to reference other artworks and printed materials in these online galleries, including paintings and sculpture.

My direction to you for this research paper is as follows: Develop an argument relating to how your subject relates to the period in which it was made.

Paper criteria:


Title that communicates your topic and suggests your argument.


Introduction to your topic. Summary of your subject and argument. (1 paragraph)


Visual description of contemporary design subject, including its type or title, date, medium, and where you viewed it (location or website). (1 paragraph) Manufacturing, fabrication and/or craft techniques. (1 paragraph)

V. Artist Information.

Biographical details relevant to your subject. (1 paragraph)

VI. Cultural Connections.

Include your own perspective on how the design connects with social, political, economic, scientific, and/or technological factors of its time. This can include art and design movements/groups. This is where I will expect to read about how your subject relates to the period in which is was made. (2-3 paragraphs)

VII. Conclusion.

Write a short concluding paragraph re-stating your argument and artfully bringing together the points that you have made. (1 paragraph)

VIII. Citations.

Include at least two citations using the Chicago Manual of Style footnote format. Also include Bibliography as final page. (Bibliography does not count toward 3-page minimum.)

IX. Illustrations.

Include at least one image of your subject. Related images encouraged (Image does not count toward 3-page minimum.)