Objects are not still. And yet design is often considered in terms of static aesthetic and functional qualities, without much consideration of trajectory in time or relationships with people. The objects presented in Action! Design over Time reveal the often overlooked dimension of temporality, providing a deeper understanding of contemporary design. Some of these objects embody frozen moments in time, whether crafted by hand (like Ingo Maurer’s Porca Miseria! chandelier, which is made of broken dishes) or crystallized by a computer using a digital manufacturing machine (as with Ammar Eloueini’s CoReFab chair). Instead of a single moment, other featured objects capture entire lifecycles; Christien Meindertsma’s book PIG 05049 tracks all 185 products made from a single pig. Some examples focus on communication and interaction design, whose nature is inherently connected to time. These interfaces and visualizations interpret and render data over time—commercial air traffic across the United States, taxi traffic in San Francisco, or the editorial evolution of Wikipedia entries, for instance—in an elegant and efficient way.
The exhibition is organized by Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator, Patricia Juncosa-Vecchierini and Kate Carmody, Curatorial Assistants, Department of Architecture and Design.