JF Ptak Science Books Post 2723
Here's another in this series of fabulous color in 1930's and mid-1940's designs, and the third from the Armstrong Cork Company and their sales pamphlets for their linoleum flooring (Better Floors for Better Business, printed in Lancaster, Pa.). As I've said earlier, it is somewhat jarring to see these designs in color when we're so trained from the pre-color movies to see them in all of their tremendous facets of black & white mixes. It is hard to think of Sidney Greenstreet gliding across a room or through a restaurant that is bathed in nothing but shades of gray, when in fact he could've been wearing a brilliant plum-colored suit and moving across a flaming red floor. And in this case, with Armstrong, they did indeed make flaming red flooring--and in stark contrasts with yellows and blue designs.
So I decided this time to take five examples of these designs and contrast them in color and then in black and white--it is an interesting little exercise in expectation and what our heads have been trained to see in old films. (All of the color images are as found in the Armstrong catalog--no enhancement.)
And then, the shock of non-recognition (apologies to Edmund Wilson and William Gaddis):
Unexpected, no? It reminds me of seeing a b+w episode of Leave it to Beaver, where the Beaver buys himself a suit and his parents are completely done-in by its color, which of course on the tv looked like pretty much everything else.
Here's four more, including Postman's Specialty Shop, 5th Ave, NYC: