Featuring more than forty items from the Brooklyn Museum’s collection of American and European decorative arts, 19th-Century Modern will focus on the emergence of Modernism, a design aesthetic based in part on the machine as a source of artistic inspiration. To many, “modern design” suggests the simple lines, abstract decoration, and machine-based methods and materials that gained widespread popularity in the twentieth century. The objects in this installation demonstrate that the development of modern industrial design and the emergence of a taste for abstraction began much earlier. In addition to differences in objects’ appearance, this period marked important modifications in how objects were produced and marketed. The works included illustrate the development of the modern industrial world and of an appreciation for simple decoration based either on geometry or organic curves.