Growing up as a midcentury modern Mad Man.

As a kid, I remember making felt-marker drawings on the floor of my dad’s advertising office. He was drawing, too, only his minimalist line and curve layouts became VW billboards. The car – and his posters – went on to become Modernist classics.

Outside his office, I saw the lines and curves of modernism everywhere; in Hollywood’s Art Deco ornamentation, in post-and-beam architecture above the city’s canyons, and in Southern California’s film and arts scene.

By the early seventies, I was a “Mad Man” creative in advertising as well. Not surprisingly, I embraced contemporary design’s cross-currents at every opportunity; choosing furniture by Mies, Saarinen and Mollino – prints by Hockney, Rauschenberg and Ruscha. Even my jazz records were Blue Note modern; their Reid Miles album covers as riveting on the outside as the be-bop within.

In early 2011, after a lifetime of Modernist musings, I finally launched Novodeco.com. My jewelry design celebrates the continuing conversation between line and curve, Deco and Bauhaus; De Stijl and Objectivism; Dada and Constructivism and the many sub-genres in between. That may hurt to think about, but it’s easy to wear. In 2013, Novodeco will be collaborating with the museum community on custom designs for upcoming exhibits and/or permanent display.

See you at the corner of retro and modern.

Perrin Lam

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