Design and popular entertainment

Edited by Christopher Frayling and Emily King

With Harriet Atkinson

Design and popular entertainment
Hardcover -
  • Price: £90.00
  • ISBN: 9780719080166
  • Publish Date: Jun 2009
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
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    Book Information


    Design and Popular Entertainment offers a selection of nine essays that examine the range of design for popular entertainment, from theatre and film, to television and radio. Investigating entertainment design from the late nineteenth century to the 1960s, the book is divided into two sections. The first addresses the 'hardware' of popular entertainment, in other words the objects through which images, sound and performance are transmitted. The second explores the construction of cinematic and televisual imagery and the design of objects for the screen, the 'software' of entertainment. In so doing it offers important insights into this little explored aspect of design.

    Topics covered by the collection include the design of theatrical lighting and stage sets, cinema and radio design, the representation of designers within film, and the relationship between design and television. The book's concentration on the 1950s and 1960s reflects the profound changes in modes of entertainment that took place during that period, in particular the spread of television, which not only attracted a huge popular audience but also stimulated experimental designing approaches and thinking. With particular focus on the way that both the objects and the construction of entertainment have altered audience's experience, the essays present a novel approach to the subject. This book will be of particular interest to students and teachers working in design and cultural history as well as film and theatre studies.


    List of plates
    List of contributors
    Introduction, Emily King and Christopher Frayling
    I. Design and popular entertainment - Hardware
    1. From gas to electric lighting in London theatres of the late nineteenth century, Beth Hannant
    2. Transforming the audience: Theatricality in the designs of Norman Bel Geddes, 1914-1939, Nicolas P. Maffei
    3. The construction of a modern pleasure palace: Dreamland Cinema, Margate, 1935, Josephine Kane
    4. Worlds in a box: Technology and culture in 1950s British radio design, David Attwood
    II. Design and popular entertainment - Software
    5. Design and the Dream Factory in Britain, Christopher Frayling
    6. Taking credit: Saul Bass, Otto Preminger and Alfred Hitchcock, Emily King
    7. Prop goes the easel! Alistair Grant's paintings for The Rebel, 1960, Alistair O'Neill
    8. Design in the monochrome box: The BBC television design department and the modern style, 1946-62, Michelle Jones
    9. The evolution of a new televisual language: the sets, title sequences and consumers of Ready Steady Go! 1963-66, Alice Twemlow


    Christopher Frayling is Rector of the Royal College of Art in London, and the author of 16 books on design and popular culture. Emily King is a freelance writer and curator. Harriet Atkinson is an historian based at the Royal College of Art in London

    Design and popular entertainment

    Edited by Christopher Frayling, Emily King

    Hardcover £90.00 / $140.00

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