Design for a Living World now open at the Cooper-Hewitt
The latest Cooper-Hewitt exhibition, aptly titled Design For A Living World, combines the thoughtful material research of an environmental scientist, the sexy design aesthetics of the highest end showrooms, and the celebrity and travel itinerary of a reality TV series. Curated by Ellen Lupton and Pentagram’s Abbott Miller, Design For A Living World sends renown designers, including Yves Behar and Hella Jongerius, to locations ranging from Central America to rural Idaho to explore the qualities of a natural material, then produce a design inspired by the material. The exhibition showcases this “material + design quest,” documenting the entire process from cacao bean to kitchen tool (Behar) and chicle tree to vase (Jongerius). The show goes so much deeper than the usual “green materials are great” credo, combining a deep understanding of the ecologies from which we build our physical environments, with sensitive design thinking that brings the true beauty of such materials to life.
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