FuturLiberty Liberty Fabrics and the Avant-Garde

Ester Coen, Richard Cork

This book looks back through the Liberty archives as it explores the strong influence of early twentieth-century avant-garde art on Liberty’s fabric designs.

Liberty is renowned internationally for its fabrics, especially its floral patterns, but it also has a long history of developing bold, geometric designs. Many of these were inspired by early twentieth-century avant-garde art, notably by Italian Futurists, such as Giacomo Balla and Umberto Boccioni, and their English contemporaries the Vorticists, including Christopher Nevinson and Edward Wadsworth.

In anticipation of Liberty's 150th anniversary, renowned couturier and interior designer Federico Forquet has curated a striking new range of fabrics—the FuturLiberty Collection—that carries Liberty's creative heritage into our own age.

The Futurist and Vorticist art that lies behind the new designs is explored by specialists Ester Coen and Richard Cork, while archivist Anna Buruma examines Liberty's rich history of avant-garde designs. By illuminating the process by which the FuturLiberty Collection came into being, this highly visual study also reveals how art can inform design, making it contemporary, relevant, and engaging.


Ester Coen


Ester Coen is an expert on Italian Futurism and the international avant-garde. She has been associate professor at the University of Florence and professor at the universities of Udine and L'Aquila.

Richard Cork


Richard Cork is an award-winning art critic, historian, broadcaster, and curator. He has acted as a judge for the Turner Prize and curated major exhibitions at Tate, the Hayward Gallery, the Barbican Art Gallery, the Royal Academy of Arts, and other European venues. Previously art critic for the Evening Standard, then chief art critic of The Times, he broadcasts regularly on BBC radio and TV and has written several books.