“Making | Breaking: New Arrivals” featured 43 design objects, including Calico Wallpapers’ Aurora Ray sidewall, that explores emerging technology and techniques.
“Contemporary design is a window into the future as designers wield the latest technologies and manipulate materials to reinvent the familiar or introduce something entirely new and needed,” said Caroline Baumann, director of the museum. “Cooper Hewitt’s permanent collection documents the design process over centuries of progress because we place special emphasis on recording creative breakthroughs.
“Understanding how a designer transforms plastic into flowing fabric or a poster into digital animation provides visitors with a richer, more holistic view of the impact of contemporary design and designers on our lives,” Baumann added.
Calico Wallpaper’s Aurora Ray sidewall mixes both traditional craft and technology. The designers created an ombre effect by painting and dipping linen while a digital print of the dyed linen was used to create wallpaper panels.
For Rachel Mosler and Nick Cope, life and work partners known for their marbleized wall murals, their Aurora collection was inspired by “distant shores.” For instance, inspiration came from Mosler’s time spent at the artist residency Villa Lena in Italy.
“Nothing compares to early morning light on the horizon,” Mosler said. “We wanted to capture its ephemeral quality and bring it to the home. It’s really quite immersive.”
Other highlights of the display include National Design Award winner Aaron Koblin’s Ten Thousand Cents, which is a digital rendering of a $100 bill created from individually crowdsourced drawings. A $100 bill was divided into 10,000 equal pieces and shared digitally for participants to duplicate for $0.01 per piece, according to the Cooper Hewitt website.
Furthermore, The Haas Brothers created the Turgid Dong Accretion vase, which is a unique vessel with forms suggestive of body parts and organic elements.
The designs are on view until October 29th. Cooper Hewitt is located at 2 East 91st Street in Manhattan.