Design and architecture exhibitions to see in 2024

salonemilano, designmuseum

Designmuseum Danmark - Ph. Christian Hoyer

From the Alessandro Mendini retrospective at the Triennale to the new Doha Biennial, Barbie and her designer objects, here are this year’s unmissable Italian and international exhibitions and events

Fondation Cartier, salonemilano

Fondation Cartier - Ph. Neville Sukhia

Fondation Cartier – “Bijoy Jain / Studio Mumbai: Breath of an Architect” 

How do you slow down time? The answer is, “Breathe.” Bijoy Jain, director and principal architect of Studio Mumbai, articulates this concept in the exhibition at the Fondation Cartier pour l’Art Contemporain, devised to engage in a dialogue with Jean Nouvel’s building. By creating a space “for contemplation and dreaming”, Jain seeks to make the exhibition above all a physical and emotional experience. On the suggestion of Hervé Chandès, general curator of the exhibition, he also invited the Chinese painter Hu Liu and the Danish ceramist of Turkish origin (but at home in Paris) Alev Ebüzziya Siesbye to join him.

Paris, until 21 April 2024

maxxi, salonemilano, alvar aalto

MAXXI, Casa sperimentale a Muuratsalo , Muuratsalo, Finlandia - Ph. Heikki Havas 

MAXXI – “AALTO. Aino Alvar Elissa: la dimensione umana del progetto” 

Architecture, art and design are inseparable parts of a whole in the Aaltos’ vision. Their buildings, perfectly in harmony with the natural setting, and their design objects, have become icons and are found in many homes thanks to the family’s distinctive concern for low-cost serial production. Curated by Space Caviar, the exhibition presents 11 projects created by Studio Aalto across the range of its whole activity, and by its experimental exhibit design it offers different interpretations of the work of Alvar Aalto and his two wives Aino and Elissa. 

Rome, until 26 May 2024

Read also: Top 10 architecture projects most eagerly anticipated in 2024

moma, new york, salonemilano

MoMa, “Life Cycles: The Materials of Contemporary Design”

MoMa “Life Cycles: The Materials of Contemporary Design” 

Organized  by Paola Antonelli and Maya Ellerkmann, the exhibition explores the regenerative power of design by reflecting on the collaborative relationship it can establish with the natural world. It highlights the whole life cycle of materials, from source to disposal or reuse, and the practices that today’s designers are experimenting with in their efforts to heal the planet. These experiments sometimes stem from ancient traditions (for example, using cow manure or the mycelium of fungi) to create  innovative and sustainable strategies.

New York, until 7 July 2024

met, salonemilano

MET, Grounded in clay 

Met “Grounded in Clay: The Spirit of Pueblo Pottery 

Pueblo pottery is one of Native Americans’ oldest creative expressions. In a paradigm shift that is sure to prove seminal, for the first time the Metropolitan Museum, New York, is presenting an exhibition curated by the same community of individuals who have made and used these ceramics for millennia. A showcase of fascinating historical and contemporary pieces, revealing the outlook of the indigenous people and challenging stereotypes. 

New York, until 4 July 2024

eataly, bruno munari, mostre

Vetrino per Proiezione diretta, Fondazione JVBD, Milano, 1951 – Ph. Davide Marossi

Eataly Art House “Bruno Munari: la leggerezza dell’arte”  

Bruno Munari’s artistic and intellectual legacy is still relevant. The exhibition on the first floor of Eataly Verona, curated by Alberto Salvadori and Luca Zaffarano in conjunction with the Repetto Gallery in Lugano, retraces the salient stages of his career while bringing out his singular mixture of art, technology and play. The exhibition is accompanied by the same educational workshops that were originally conceived, in 1977, for the Pinacoteca di Brera in Milan with the title “Playing with Art”. Based on the famed “Munari Method” in which one learns by doing. 

Verona, until 31 March 2024

qatar museums, salonemilano

Qatar Museums - Courtesy of Design Doha - Ph. Nermeen Abudail

Qatar Museums – “Design Doha” 

In February, the Doha Design Biennial makes its debut. Promoted by Qatar Museums, the event will take place in the existing design district (within the Msheireb district) and aims to become a focus for talents from the Middle East and North Africa. Design Doha ranges from architecture and urban planning to landscape design, graphic and textile design, woodworking, glass and ceramics. Curated by Rana Beiruti – founder of Amman Design Week – the event explores the ways local designers combine contemporary aesthetics and ancient traditions, the region’s heritage.

Doha, 24 - 28 February 2024