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June 25, 2015  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
Having a Wonderful Time at the Bauhaus Exhibition in Weimar, 1923
Paul Klee. Bauhaus Ausstellung Weimar Juli–Sept, 1923, Karte 5. 1923. Lithograph, 3 15/16 x 5 7/8  " (10 × 15 cm). Committee on Architecture and Design Funds. Photo: John Wronn

Paul Klee. Bauhaus Ausstellung Weimar Juli–Sept, 1923, Karte 5. 1923. Lithograph, 3 15/16 x 5 7/8  ” (10 × 15 cm). Committee on Architecture and Design Funds. Photo: John Wronn

When friends went off on a summer vacation adventure and I heard myself request that they be sure to post some pictures on Instagram, I wondered what happened to “send postcards?” It really was not so very long ago when I could open my mailbox (my letter box) and regularly find a picture postcard from someone gone halfway around the world—or even just across town—with a handwritten personal note or a “having a wonderful time wish you were here,” or some artist post cards with wonderful, artfully collaged imagery from a mail art–artist friend. Now, it’s a rarity. Read more

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June 17, 2015  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
MoMA Acquires the Rainbow Flag
The Rainbow Flag waving in the wind at San Francisco's Castro District. Photo: Benson Kua. Image used through Wikimedia Commons

The Rainbow Flag waving in the wind at San Francisco’s Castro District. Photo: Benson Kua. Image used through Wikimedia Commons

We’re thrilled to announce that MoMA has acquired the iconic Rainbow Flag into its design collection, where it joins similarly universal symbols such as the @ symbol, the Creative Commons logo, and the recycling symbol. Artist Gilbert Baker created the Rainbow Flag in 1978 in San Francisco. Just a few days ago, he met Michelle Millar Fisher in MoMA’s offices to record an interview for the MoMA Archives, part of which is transcribed here. Read more

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June 10, 2015  |  Design, Tech
Actions Speak Louder than Words? Debating the Internet, Open Wide

In the fall of 2010, close to 4.8 million articles were downloaded from the password-protected, subscriber-only, nonprofit online academic journal repository JSTOR in an extended cyber hack that used the campus network at MIT. The articles represented roughly 80% of JSTOR’s total cache. Read more

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March 27, 2015  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
This Is for Everyone: Free Play
Golan Levin. Free Art and Technology Lab, R. Shawn Sims, Sy-Lab. Free Universal Construction Kit. 2012. Digital CAD files and 80 3-D-printed nylon units. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of the Committee on Architecture & Design and Shapeways

Golan Levin. Free Art and Technology Lab, R. Shawn Sims, Sy-Lab. Free Universal Construction Kit. 2012. Digital CAD files and 80 3-D-printed nylon units. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of the Committee on Architecture & Design and Shapeways

When the world we live in feels too impossible I find myself imagining the world I want to live in. It’s not just about the major acts of horrific inhumanity that humans bestow upon one another, it’s about the small daily indignities too. In the world I want to live in we’re not senselessly slaughtering each other, and no one throws trash on the ground or holds the entire communal table in the coffee shop hostage with their cell phone conversation, either. And people actually do step aside to let the passengers off the train. In the world I want to live in, it’s understood that we are all in this together. Call me a cockeyed optimist, but I’m convinced that the smallest effort toward compatibility goes a long way. Read more

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March 11, 2015  |  Design, Viewpoints
Paola Antonelli on Curating, MoMA’s Collection, and Design Today: A Reddit AMA Recap

Paola Antonelli, Director of Research and Development, and Senior Curator, Department of Architecture and Design, The Museum of Modern Art, NY. Photo: Robin Holland

Paola Antonelli, Director of Research and Development, and Senior Curator, Department of Architecture and Design, The Museum of Modern Art. Photo: Robin Holland

Last week, MoMA’s senior curator of Architecture and Design and director of R&D, Paola Antonelli, answered questions for Reddit users as part of the interview series Ask Me Anything (AMA). Having just reinstalled MoMA’s design galleries for the exhibition This Is for Everyone: Design Experiments for the Common Good—which includes several new acquisitions, including the @ symbol and the Wyss Institute’s Human Organs-on-Chips—Antonelli offered some insights into her work, MoMA’s collection, and the future of design. Read more

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March 4, 2015  |  Collection & Exhibitions, Design
Is This for Everyone? New Design Acquisitions at MoMA

What do Susan Kare’s graphic designs for user interface icons, The Living’s mycelium bricks, and Formafantasma’s speculative Botanica series of vessels have in common? Apart from each being compelling contemporary design experiments in their own right, they’re also part of the newest crop of acquisitions welcomed into The Museum of Modern Art’s collection, and all are now on public display in the recently opened exhibition This Is for Everyone: Design Experiments for the Common Good. Read more

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February 12, 2015  |  Design, Events & Programs
Museums as the R&D of Society
"Judging of the Competition Entries: Two Jurors, Catherine Bauer and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, discussing an entry.Edgar Kaufmann, Jr., Competition Director standing in background." Publicity photograph released in connection with the exhibition, "Prize Design for Modern Furniture." 1950

“Judging of the Competition Entries: Two Jurors, Catherine Bauer and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, discussing an entry. Edgar Kaufmann, Jr., Competition Director standing in background.” Publicity photograph released in connection with the exhibition, “Prize Design for Modern Furniture.” 1948

Historically, museums have played an active role in civic life by cultivating dialogue and prompting action around critical issues, at times creating impossible diplomatic bridges even in the midst of long-standing international conflicts. Read more

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December 17, 2014  |  Design, Videos
Designing Life: Synthetic Biology and Design
Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg. The Synthetic Kingdom, a proposal for a new branch of the tree of life to accommodate our "new nature." From the project The Synthetic Kingdom: A Natural History of the Synthetic Future. 2009. Image courtesy of the designer

Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg. The Synthetic Kingdom, a proposal for a new branch of the tree of life to accommodate our “new nature.” From the project The Synthetic Kingdom: A Natural History of the Synthetic Future. 2009. Image courtesy of the designer

What happens when biology—specifically, the core materials and processes that underpin the life cycle of all living beings—birth, existence, disease, and death—becomes synthetically replicable by humans and, consequently, a building block for design? Read more

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December 3, 2014  |  Behind the Scenes, Design
Designing an Identity for Matisse’s Cut-Outs

One of the great things about working in MoMA’s Department of Advertising and Graphic Design is the range of projects we get to work on. Our work ranges from advertising to exhibitions to printed materials and internal signage. Most recently, we got a chance to collaborate with MoMA’s retail department to develop products for the Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs exhibition. Read more

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November 5, 2014  |  Design
Welcoming New Humble Masterpieces into MoMA’s Collection
Technology Will Save Us. DIY Gamer Kit. 2013. Electronic components, dimensions variable. Gift of the designers

Technology Will Save Us. DIY Gamer Kit. 2013. Electronic components, dimensions variable. Gift of the designers

When thinking about the masterpieces in MoMA’s collection, one might be forgiven for visualizing Picasso’s Demoiselles (1907) or Jackson Pollock’s One (1950). The canon of visual art and design—a force that has shaped popular opinion—has, for centuries, held large-scale painting in high regard. Even the Oxford Dictionary entry for “masterpiece”—(noun): A work of outstanding artistry, skill, or workmanship”—uses Picasso as its defining example. Read more