Friday, May 15, 2009

The Amazing Cars of the 1950s

The 1950s were an amazingly fertile time for the design of classic automobiles. The 1957 Ford Fairlane and the 1957 Chevy (left) are still remembered fondly by people of a certain age. In contrast to the big fins and huge size, this was also the time of the smaller classics like the Studebaker and Ford Thunderbird.

Virgil Exner, fired from Studebaker by Raymond Loewy in 1944, went on to become head of design at Chrysler and enjoyed a 30 year career in auto and boat design while never becoming as well known as Loewy. Much of the history of auto design from this time can found in a book (right) about Virgil Exner's career.

There are certain pivotal points in design history and, to be culturally literate, students should know about the influences on our culture of designers such as Raymond Loewy, Virgil Exner and Brooks Stevens.

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