For 50 years, Los Angeles-based artist/designers Evelyn and Jerome Ackerman played a central role in the distinctive aesthetic of California mid-century modernism. Employing their deep knowledge of fine art, traditional craft, and design, the couple created a body of work remarkable for its diversity of styles, techniques, and materials.
Jerome (“Jerry”) and Evelyn Ackerman brought their creativity, optimism, versatility, and hard work together in a shared life and career spanning five decades. In joining their complementary talents, Jerome and Evelyn strove to make beautiful yet affordable and accessible designs for homes and offices. Their life represents a true marriage of art and design that resulted in a prolific output of ceramics, mosaics, textiles, woodcarvings, hardware, and metal that embodied a modernist sensibility.
The creative direction of their work grew out of the principles of the Bauhaus, a design movement based on an influential German art and design school that flourished from 1919 to 1933. Building on the Bauhaus belief that fine and applied arts are equally important, the Ackermans integrated their training in fine art and craftsmanship over the course of their long and prolific professional career. Their signature design style moved from abstract modernism to figurative stylization. Playing a central role as designer-craftsmen, Jerome and Evelyn Ackerman helped to shape what is now known as California mid-century modern style.
The Ackermans hold the rare distinction of being included in every exhibition (1954 to 1976) of the prestigious “California Design” series, held primarily at the former Pasadena Art Museum. The couple has been the subject of numerous articles in the local and national press and their pieces are in many public and private collections. The first major retrospective of their work, “Masters of Mid-Century California Modernism: Evelyn and Jerome Ackerman,” was on view at the Mingei International Museum in San Diego through January 10, 2010. The Loft proudly features their works for our show “Craft Meets Art and Design”.