Vicki Matranga, H/IDSA | International Housewares Association
IDSA History Section Vice Chair: 2012
Victoria Matranga is an historian, publicist, and researcher specializing in U.S. product design. In a dual career, she works for a major trade association to promote design and is an independent museum consultant, author, lecturer and researcher.
Vicki Matranga has been Design Programs Coordinator for the International Housewares Association (IHA) since 1992. There she manages IHA’s Student Design Competition and the Housewares Design Awards, coordinates displays and organizes the Design Theater and design-related events for the annual International Home + Housewares Show.
Matranga consults with museums such as The Art Institute of Chicago, The Toledo Museum of Art, the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio, and the Schenectady Museum. For Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry, she developed content for three exhibitions in the annual Black Creativity program, including the 2007 Designs For Life program that featured 45 African-American product designers. Since 2007 she has been the curator of the Culinary Curiosity exhibition about antique food preparation tools at the Kendall College School of Culinary Arts in Chicago.
She is the author of America at Home: A Celebration of Twentieth-Century Housewares, a book published in 1997, which presented a unique cultural perspective on the evolution of household products in relation to lifestyles, women, technology, and retailing. She has written essays for historical encyclopedias and museum catalogues. She wrote sections of The Alliance of Art and Industry: Toledo Designs for a Modern America, published by the Toledo Museum of Art in 2002. She interpreted Chicago’s industrial design legacy for The Encyclopedia of Chicago, edited Design Chronicles, a 2005 book written by Carroll Gantz, and assisted in the development of the 2006 autobiography of designer Charles Harrison, A Life’s Design.
She delivers lectures on housekeeping history to varied audiences, appears on television, and is often quoted in print media about consumer trends. For the IDSA, she works with the Design History section to document designers’ careers with archives collections and oral histories, and has recorded several podcasts. In October 2004, the IDSA awarded Matranga its honorary membership “in recognition and gratitude for special efforts to enhance the public’s appreciation of industrial design.”
She holds a bachelor's in the History of Art and Architecture from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a master's in Marketing from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Business.