Step inside the ‘Goodnight Moon’ bedroom in a new immersive exhibition

March 24, 2021

All photos by Joe Kramm, courtesy of Fort Makers

Local design studio and artist collective Fort Makers has put together a new, immersive exhibition called “Goodnight House.” Inspired by the classic children’s book “Goodnight Moon“–written by Brooklyn-born author Margaret Wise Brown–the show not only brings you into the book’s pages, but it features new artwork and designed objects that are reimaginations of various objects found within the book’s bedroom setting.

“Goodnight Moon” was first published in 1947, written by Margaret Wise Brown and illustrated by Clement Hurd. (The pair is also behind “Runaway Bunny.”) As a press release recounts, the story “is a short rhyming poem describing a young rabbit’s bedtime ritual of saying repetitive, meditative, goodnight wishes to everything in sight and in earshot, from inanimate bedroom objects—including a red balloon, a pair of socks, a toy house, and a bowl of mush—to the air, the stars, the moon, and even a house.”

Interestingly, when it first came out, the New York Public Library refused to keep the book on its shelves for 25 years. “Despite the librarian’s opposition to a progressive wave of children’s literature, and even though the book had poor sales in its first year, “Goodnight Moon” eventually gained universal affection and became one of the most famous children’s books of all time. While subtly subversive, “Goodnight Moon” allows us to see through the eyes of a child, and instills in us essential tools for innovation. That’s something worth celebrating,” says Fort Makers co-founder and creative director Nana Spears.

In fact, today, there are countless reinterpretations of the story, from “Goodnight New York City” and “Goodnight Central Park” to “Goodnight Campsite” and “Goodnight Dinosaur.”

The exhibition brought on contemporary artists and designers “whose practices each embrace a childlike curiosity.” The works include:

  • An upholstered bed and handwoven textiles by Liz Collins
  • Candles in the Goodnight Moon colorway by Crying Clover (Sara Gernsbacher & JPW3)
  • Character-inspired candles by Janie Korn
  • A ceramic mantlepiece clock by Keith Simpson
  • A rocking chair, stools, and a cloud-shaped bedside table and storage unit by CHIAOZZA (Adam Frezza & Terri Chiao).
  • Ceramic table lamps by Samuel Harvey
  • Paintings by Marcel Alcalá
  • Picture frames and hand-carved wooden spoons by Nick DeMarco
  • Ceramic bowls by Lauren Elder
  • Ceramic mugs and bowls by Shino Takeda
  • A bedside rug and ottoman by Tamika Rivera
  • Painted silk curtains and pillows by Fort Makers Co-Founder Naomi S. Clark
  • A dollhouse light, a black balloon sconce, and etched wooden cubes by Fort Makers Co-Founders Nana Spears & Noah Spencer

“Goodnight House” will be on view through May 27, 2021. It’s located at 38 Orchard Street. Gallery hours are on Saturdays from 12 to 6pm, with appointments available Thursday through Sunday from 12 to 6pm.


All photos by Joe Kramm, courtesy of Fort Makers

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