Norman Bel Geddes

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Norman Bel Geddes (gĕd´ēz), 1893–1958, American designer, b. Adrian, Mich. as Norman Melancton Geddes. He began his career in 1918 as a scene designer for the Metropolitan Opera. He became known for imaginative designs, both for the New York stage and for numerous streamlined industrial products. Geddes also designed several theaters and other buildings in the United States and abroad. His design approach was exemplified by the General Motors pavilion and its "Futurama" display at the 1939 New York World's Fair.

See his posthumous Miracle in the Evening (1960); D. Albrecht, ed., Norman Bel Geddes Designs America (2012).

His daughter, Barbara Bel Geddes, 1922–2005, b. New York City, an actress, created the role of Maggie the Cat in Tennessee Williams's Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955) and the title role in Jean Kerr's Mary, Mary (1961). Her film work included Elia Kazan's Panic in the Streets (1950) and Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo (1958). She also had a leading role in the 1970s and 80s in the television series Dallas.

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Geddes, Norman Bel (1893–1958). American designer, he became identified with the style known as ‘streamlining’, based on aerodynamics. He designed the General Motors Pavilion at the New York World's Fair (1939), and published Magic Motorways (1940). He was responsible for many interiors, designed the Toledo Scale Company Building, Ohio (1929), and produced a scheme of prefabricated housing systems for the Housing Corporation of America (1940).


N. Geddes (1932, 1940, 1940a);
W. Kelley (ed.) (1960);
Welter (2002);

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