The whimsical Alessi bird whistle tea kettle, designed by architect Michael Graves in 1985, is the company's best-selling item of all time.

Inside the World of Alessi

Hidden away in northern Italy’s lake district, the design factory has influenced the look of American kitchens for decades

Will Leslie's kitchen forgive her for reckless abandonment?

Inviting Writing: Can a Kitchen Forgive?

We've grown apart, I know. But it's me, really, not you. I've been cheating on you with easy catches and have brought home some unsavory characters

Charles Harrison, who created a more affordable View-Master and the first plastic trash can, designed 8 to 12 Sears sewing machines ever year for 12 years.

Intelligent Designer

Charles Harrison, former industrial designer at Sears, Roebuck and Company, created practical innovations that touched many lives

Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia

Big Deals

Revelry and Architecture

Fans of Koolhaas's CCTV skyscraper call it "gravity-defying", but critics claim it's nothing more than an expensive playtoy-and that the money would have been better spent reducing the country's runaway wealth gap

Beijng Redux

The capital hasn’t seen this kind of makeover since the Mongols overtook the city, but a new Beijing may not be what’s best for a modern China


For Hire: Holiday Window Designer

Decking the halls with Barney’s creative director Simon Doonan

Computer History Museum

Digital Attic

Dag Spicer, senior curator at the Computer History Museum, discusses 1950s mainframes, an original Apple One and Steve Wozniak's baby shoes


Flights of Fancy

Leslie Payne's flying machines soared, if only in his imagination

John Coyne's New Global Theatre creates a virtual performance where the production occurs on several different stages and is broadcast via monitors to the actors and the audience.

Recasting Shakespeare's Stage

Designing a Globe Theatre for the 21st century

The tattooed right hand of a Chiribaya mummy is displayed at El Algarrobal Museum, near the port of Ilo in southern Peru. The Chiribaya were farmers who lived from A.D. 900 to 1350.


The Ancient and Mysterious History

Damon Conklin uses the body, from head to feet, as his canvas.

Today's Tattoos

Making your mark

Soda bottles make up the bulk of the construction of a 3,500-liter cistern that Andreas Froese (pictured) and schoolchildren built in Roatan, Honduras. When filled with sand, the bottles become nearly indestructible.

Waste Into Walls: Building Casas Out of Sand

A green technology guru heads to the dump in search of the stuff of dreams


Building the New Urbanism

Urban planners take a cue from pre-WWII cities and towns


Q&A: Cheryl Henson

Cheryl Henson, Henson's daughter and a muppet designer, spoke with Smithsonian's Jennifer Drapkin

The Robert N. Stewart Bridge

By Design

Over the past half-century the small town of Columbus, Indiana, has turned itself into a showplace of modern architecture

35 Who Made a Difference: Julie Taymor

Transcending genres, the designer and director creates shamanistic theater

"These places contain the residue of the many souls that have passed through over the years," says Solis of such locales as Rochester's abandoned Court Street subway station.

Tunnel Visionary

Intrepid explorer Julia Solis finds beauty in the ruins of derelict urban structures

The Dahlia necklace was produced in the Netherlands in 1984.

Man's Reach

The Cooper-Hewitt explores the wide-ranging impact of historical and contemporary designs

"This is the energy of American culture at its most useful and exuberant," says Philadelphia architectural historian George Thomas, 58, of motels like the Caribbean, whose vintage style is echoed in the 2001 renovation of the Starlux.

Doo Wop by the Sea

Architects and preservationists have turned a strip of New Jersey shore into a monument to mid-century architecture. Can they keep the bulldozers at bay?

Gaudí's most ambitious and controversial project, the boldly innovative, unfinished Sagrada Família church, has become a beacon for tourists and a symbol of Barcelona.


Gaudí's Gift

In Barcelona, a yearlong celebration spotlights architecture's playful genius the audacious and eccentric Antoni Gaudí

Page 19 of 20