The world’s first curatorial department devoted to architecture and design was established in 1932 at The Museum of Modern Art. From its inception, the collection has been built on the recognition that architecture and design are allied and interdependent arts, so that synthesis has been a founding premise of the collection. Including 28,000 works ranging from large-scale design objects to works on paper and architectural models, the Museum’s diverse Architecture and Design collection surveys major figures and movements from the mid-19th century to the present.
Starting with the reform ideology established by the Arts and Crafts movement, the collection covers major movements of the 20th century and contemporary issues. The architecture collection documents buildings through models, drawings, and photographs, and includes the Mies van der Rohe Archive. The design collection comprises thousands of objects, ranging from appliances, furniture, and tableware to tools, textiles, sports cars—even a helicopter. The graphic design collection includes noteworthy examples of typography, posters, and other combinations of text and image.