Stichting Goed Wonen

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(Good Living Foundation, established 1948)

This Dutch foundation was set up to promote well‐designed domestic goods and, like many other contemporary ‘Good Design’ initiatives (See Design Council), its idealistic agenda of bringing together manufacturers, retailers, consumers, and designers failed to capture widespread support. Among the more energetic individuals involved in its affairs included Mart Stam, Johan Niegeman, and Hein Salomonson. In order to make its goals more accessible it established a periodical, Goed Wonen, and also—in common with other contemporary organizations concerned with the promotion of modern design (See Design Council; Museum of Modern Art, New York)—presented awards for selected modern products. Early award winners included Gispen lamps and Leerdam glass. In common with many other design promotional organizations Goed Wonen also promoted its ideas through the furnishing and equipping of show houses. Goed Wonen was also involved in furniture manufacture. Although it attracted real public interest at a time when goods were in short supply, the idea of ‘Good Design’ began to take on connotations of elitism and didacticism. As a result, the ‘Good Living’ (Goed Wonen) title was abbreviated to ‘Living’ (Wonen).

Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.

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