by Isamu Noguchi
The Radio Nurse is a pre-war baby monitor. Zenith, producer of radio's brought this item on the market after a great many parents were running scared because of the infamous Lindbergh kidnapping. A 18 months old boys was abducted from his parental house in New Yersey. Only after 2 years was his lifeless body found. The first copy was manufactured for a director of Zenith, who had a young daughter and apparently was very anxious.
The system exists out of 2 parts: a receiver, socalled Guardian Ear, which could be placed near the child, and a speaker for the parents or the babysitter. With this system they could hear how the child was doing.
The Radio Nurse was designed by the Japanese-American designer Isamu Noguchi. He liked to combine machines with human shapes. That is why the Radio Nurse looks like the face of a nurse. In WOII a lot of Radio Nurses were destroyed because of there relation with the Japanese.
Currently the Radio Nurse is a part of the Noguchi Museum in New York. It's a beautiful example of application of bakelite, one of the forerunners of plastic, and during that time, widely used for radio's and phones.