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April 6, 2011

The degree to which modernist design came to the fore of Western life—both aesthetically, in its reliance on mechanized production—at mid-century had everything to do with World War II. As much a military battle as a race to outproduce the enemy, the actual manufacture of objects would never be the same. After five years in the works, Design in Uniform at the Canadian Centre for Architecture gives us a glimpse of the design that went into the war effort and what effect it had on the rest of the century. The show opens next week at the CCA in Montreal and will travel after that. Be sure to check it out if you're north of the border: It runs April 13 through September 18th. Or if you can't make it, check out this slideshow of images.

In addition to the show, the CCA is also putting out this monograph by curator and NYU history of architecture professor Jean-Louis Cohen. The image shows a team of camouflage artists at work at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. <br /><br />Illustration in Robert P
In addition to the show, the CCA is also putting out this monograph by curator and NYU history of architecture professor Jean-Louis Cohen. The image shows a team of camouflage artists at work at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. Illustration in Robert P. Breckenridge, Modern Camouflage: The New Science of Protective Concealment, 1942. McGill University Library, Montreal. Publication Architecture en uniforme : projeter et construire pour la Seconde Guerre mondiale (2011). © CCA / Hazan.
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Here's a photo of architect Albert Kahn's Chrysler Tank Arsenal in Detroit, Michigan. The photo is from July 10, 1941 and is by photographer Hedrich-Blessing.
Here's a photo of architect Albert Kahn's Chrysler Tank Arsenal in Detroit, Michigan. The photo is from July 10, 1941 and is by photographer Hedrich-Blessing.
Courtesy of 
Property of Chicago History Museum. Not to be reproduced or used without written permission from CHM Rights & Reproductions Dep
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This Japanese infographic describes what to do in the event of an air raid. <br /><br />"Guideline for an Air Raid", Tokyo, 1943, The Wolfsonian-Florida International University, Miami Beach, Florida, The Mitchell Wolfson, Jr. Collection.
This Japanese infographic describes what to do in the event of an air raid. "Guideline for an Air Raid", Tokyo, 1943, The Wolfsonian-Florida International University, Miami Beach, Florida, The Mitchell Wolfson, Jr. Collection.
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Here we see the drafting room at the Ford Motor bomber factory in Willow Run, Michigan, in 1942. The building was designed by Albert Kahn Associates.<br /><br />Photograph by Hedrich-Blessing. CCA Collection Gift of Federico Bucci. Canadian Centre for Arc
Here we see the drafting room at the Ford Motor bomber factory in Willow Run, Michigan, in 1942. The building was designed by Albert Kahn Associates.Photograph by Hedrich-Blessing. CCA Collection Gift of Federico Bucci. Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montreal. Gift of Federico Bucci. © Chicago History Museum.
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Long before Michelle Obama was doing it, citizens on the homefront were exhorted to plant victory gardens.<br /><br /> "Plant a Victory Garden", poster, 1943. The Wolfsonian-Florida International University, Miami Beach, Florida, don de Leonard A. Lauder,
Long before Michelle Obama was doing it, citizens on the homefront were exhorted to plant victory gardens. "Plant a Victory Garden", poster, 1943. The Wolfsonian-Florida International University, Miami Beach, Florida, don de Leonard A. Lauder, 2007.
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This German poster draws a parallel between the first and second World Wars, presumably to encourage Germany on to victory. <br /><br />"Atlantic Wall; 1943 is not 1918", German poster printed in the Netherlands, 1943.<br /><br /><p><em><strong>Don't miss
This German poster draws a parallel between the first and second World Wars, presumably to encourage Germany on to victory. "Atlantic Wall; 1943 is not 1918", German poster printed in the Netherlands, 1943.

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The Wolfsonian-Florida International University, Miami Beach, Florida, The Mitchell Wolfson, Jr. Collection.
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In addition to the show, the CCA is also putting out this monograph by curator and NYU history of architecture professor Jean-Louis Cohen. The image shows a team of camouflage artists at work at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. <br /><br />Illustration in Robert P
In addition to the show, the CCA is also putting out this monograph by curator and NYU history of architecture professor Jean-Louis Cohen. The image shows a team of camouflage artists at work at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. Illustration in Robert P. Breckenridge, Modern Camouflage: The New Science of Protective Concealment, 1942. McGill University Library, Montreal. Publication Architecture en uniforme : projeter et construire pour la Seconde Guerre mondiale (2011). © CCA / Hazan.

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