Exhibitions > As Seen: Exhibitions That Made Architecture and Design History
As Seen: Exhibitions That Made Architecture and Design History
Through August 14, 2016
Exhibitions have long played a crucial role in defining disciplinary histories, as they mark pivotal moments in time and document the environment in which new narratives or arguments unfolded. At a moment when the fields of architecture and design, spurred by a multitude of crosscultural and global conversations, are opening up to new definitions, ways of working, and design and production processes, this research highlights how an exhibition can help to both concretize and critique ongoing technological and cultural shifts. As Seen is an ongoing research project that looks at the influence of architecture and design exhibitions years after their closing.
The selection presented in As Seen focuses on 11 group exhibitions from 1956 to 2006, organized by a wide range of architecture and design professionals. Through varied approaches, these exhibitions reflected on then-current dilemmas, identified alternatives to prevailing practices, and reasserted design’s implications for everyday life. Since their debut, many of these exhibitions have grown in influence through the spread of their ideas and the rising popularity of the designers involved. As Seen features a range of materials—installation images, posters, invitation cards, catalogues, correspondence, and floor plans—that are more than residual and provide glimpses into the concepts driving the exhibitions as well as the physical spaces they once occupied. Critical discourse from the media and scholars presented alongside these materials illuminates and helps to vivify the discussions surrounding these events at the time. These presentations show how the tools of curators, graphic designers, industrial designers, architects, and others can be catalyzed toward new ends, which often resonate beyond the temporal duration of the exhibition itself, ultimately making history.
Initiated as part of the Istanbul Design Biennial 2014, the research has been brought to Chicago with the aim of continuing the dialogue and illustrating a cross section of creative output to be seen through new eyes. Although it presents only a small sampling of exhibitions—by no means global in scope—the hope is that this installation reignites conversations about the influence of exhibitions on the practice and perception of architecture and design.
Sponsor This exhibition was made possible by the generous support of the Architecture & Design Society.
The exhibition design is by Project Projects.
View of IBM Pavilion by Charles and Ray Eames in the 1964 New York World's Fair. Courtesy Eames Office, Library of Congress.
10 hours 47 min ago The Art Institute of Chicago #TBT 1983: The museum held an exhibition for the collection of Jalane and Richard Davidson, Chicago collectors of contemporary American realist drawings. Acknowledged at the time for collecting against prevailing art world trends, they amassed a comprehensive collection of work spanning the careers of both well-known artists—like Jack Beal, pictured here with Jalane herself and a portrait he made of her—and lesser-known Midwestern artists. The entire Davidson collection was bequeathed to the museum and saw another exhibition devoted to it in 1999.
15 hours 16 min ago The Art Institute of Chicago Who's ready to experience A Lot of Sorrow? The National aren't playing Lollapalooza this year, but festival–goers can still see the band perform their ballad “Sorrow” on repeat for six hours, in an intensely durational film by Icelandic artist Ragnar Kjartansson.
Now on view in the Modern Wing
1 day 6 hours ago The Art Institute of Chicago Support the many fine programs of the museum and discover an interesting array of home décor, jewelry, art reproductions, and more in the Museum Shop’s Gift Catalog.
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