Populuxe Lives!

Populuxe by Thomas HineHow gratifying it is to see that 28 years after Thomas Hines coined the word “populuxe” it is now commonplace to find multiple listings on Google Search under it.  Upon reading his marvelous book Populuxe in 1987 immediately began using the term, I remember the blank look on my friends faces back then when I would describe an object as having been manufactured during the Populuxe period.  Happily it seems that term has since spread across the globe!  In the late eighties anything produced before 1965 was said by many to have, “that ‘Art Deco’ look.”  I shudder just remembering that label on clocks, blenders, etc.  The film “Back To The Future” and the Johnny Rockets restaurant chain were all the rage, and both were clearly patterned after a fondness for the Populuxe era: approx.1954-1964, not the Art Deco era: approx.1925-1945.  Thomas Hines writes,”The decade from 1954-1964 was one of history’s great shopping sprees, as many Americans went on a baroque bender and adorned their mass-produced houses, furniture and machines with accouterments of the space age and of the American frontier.”  If you’re a follower of this blog, you know I have a great fondness for both the Populuxe and Art Deco eras, and all the pop culture that accompanies them!


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