Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Panasonic Radio (Model R-72S)

Unknown Designer
Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd. , for National Panasonic
ca. 1969
ABS plastic, metal
2 3/4 x 5 7/8 in. (7 x 15 cm)
Machines & Appliances
Credit Line:
Gift of Dr. Roger P. Holt, 2000
Accession Number:
Not on view
The portable, battery-operated Japanese radio from 1969 has its mechanism housed in a bright blue, yellow or orange plastic casing (the Met's example is blue). This doughnut-shaped casing is hinged and must be twisted open to reveal the tuning dial on the inside. After tuning into the desired radio station, the casing can then be closed and the radio carried like a purse or slipped over the wrist like a bracelet. A witty and decorative effect is achieved through the sculptural quality and vivid color of the molded plastic. Easy and inexpensive to mass-produce, these radios were made to appeal to a youthful consumer market and typify the 1960s populist approach to design.
Dr. Roger P. Holt, New York (1972/73–2000; his gift to MMA)

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "A Century of Design, Part III: 1950–1975," November 28, 2000–April 1, 2001, no catalogue.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Significant Objects," November 26, 2002–May 2, 2004, no catalogue.

Jonathan M. Woodham. Twentieth-Century Ornament. New York, 1990, p. 237, ill. (color).

Corinna Rössner and Josef Strasser in "122 Selected Works from the New Acquisitions 1990 to 1995." A Century of Design. Insights: Outlook on a Museum of Tomorrow. Die Neue Sammlung, State Museum of Applied Arts, Munich. Ed. Florian Hufnagl. Stuttgart, 1996, p. 172, ill. (color) (State Museum of Applied Arts, Munich collection).

Josef Strasser in Renate Ulmer and Josef Strasser. Plastics + Design. Ed. Florian Hufnagl. Exh. cat., Die Neue Sammlung, Staatliches Museum fur angewandte Kunst. Stuttgart, 1997, pp. 104–5, ill. (color) (State Museum of Applied Arts, Munich collection).

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