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Rewind: 7 Great Designs from the Past

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From Breuer's dorm furniture to a forgotten mid-century airport in Newfoundland, we draw from the Dwell archives of oldie but goodie design content.
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  In the 1950s, Canada’s Department of Transport commissioned a modernist makeover for Gander International Airport in Newfoundland, a design that has proven as timeless as it was trendsetting.  Photo by: Simon Norfolk

    In the 1950s, Canada’s Department of Transport commissioned a modernist makeover for Gander International Airport in Newfoundland, a design that has proven as timeless as it was trendsetting.

    Photo by: Simon Norfolk

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  Under the tutelage of a Bauhaus master, Margaret De Patta trailblazed the American studio jewelry movement with wearable art.

    Under the tutelage of a Bauhaus master, Margaret De Patta trailblazed the American studio jewelry movement with wearable art.

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  Visionary architect Paolo Soleri looked beyond the bounds of four walls and a roof to orchestrate his vision for comprehensive ecological design at Arcosanti in Arizona. Here, the ribbon-like Lean Linear City: Arterial Ecology. Images courtesy Arcosanti.

    Visionary architect Paolo Soleri looked beyond the bounds of four walls and a roof to orchestrate his vision for comprehensive ecological design at Arcosanti in Arizona. Here, the ribbon-like Lean Linear City: Arterial Ecology. Images courtesy Arcosanti.

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  With a life span of just 11 months, the prefabricated 1951 Dome of Discovery, designed by architect Ralph Tubbs for the Festival of Britain, lives on as a lost cultural icon. To support the dome, Tubbs and engineers Freeman, Fox & Partners buttressed the 93-foot-high structure with 48 steel masts. Photo courtesy CHELSEA Space.

    With a life span of just 11 months, the prefabricated 1951 Dome of Discovery, designed by architect Ralph Tubbs for the Festival of Britain, lives on as a lost cultural icon. To support the dome, Tubbs and engineers Freeman, Fox & Partners buttressed the 93-foot-high structure with 48 steel masts. Photo courtesy CHELSEA Space.

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  Personally wired by Thomas Edison, J. Pierpont Morgan’s home was the first electrified residence in New York. A recent LED retrofit delivers the library into a new age.  Courtesy of: Graham Haber

    Personally wired by Thomas Edison, J. Pierpont Morgan’s home was the first electrified residence in New York. A recent LED retrofit delivers the library into a new age.

    Courtesy of: Graham Haber

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  Some of Marcel Breuer’s earlier experiments found a home in his 1938 commission from Bryn Mawr College—just as students found a home in the newly built Rhoads Hall, outfitted with desks, chairs, dressers, mirrors, and bookshelves of his design.

    Some of Marcel Breuer’s earlier experiments found a home in his 1938 commission from Bryn Mawr College—just as students found a home in the newly built Rhoads Hall, outfitted with desks, chairs, dressers, mirrors, and bookshelves of his design.

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  Italian-born architect and designer Lina Bo Bardi made an indelible mark on mid-century Brazilian architecture and design following the destruction of her office in Milan during World War II. Here, the Fábrica da Pompéia, a São Paulo cultural center Bo Bardi designed in 1986.

    Italian-born architect and designer Lina Bo Bardi made an indelible mark on mid-century Brazilian architecture and design following the destruction of her office in Milan during World War II. Here, the Fábrica da Pompéia, a São Paulo cultural center Bo Bardi designed in 1986.

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