Robert Rauschenberg: Tire Lamp, 1971. © Robert Rauschenberg/VAGA. Photo: A/D Gallery, NY
Scott Burton: Semi-circle Table, 1988. © Estate of Scott Burton and Max Protetch Gallery, NY
Franz West: Creativity: Furniture, 1998. © Franz West. Photo: Brooke Alexander Editions, NY
Donald Judd: Spring Street sink and shelf. © Judd Foundation. Photo: © Andrew Garn


Exhibition: “Design is not Art” in New York

The Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York, presents the exhibition “Design is not Art” until February 27, 2005.


Unknown design objects by famous minimalists and post-minimalists: Donald Judd, Scott Burton, Richard Tuttle, Sol LeWitt, James Turrell, Rachel Whiteread – the museum presents functional objects by these and other artists for the first time. “Design and art are not the same, but with the rise of design today you can view an artist’s work in both fields as equally interesting and inspiring,” said Barbara Bloemik, one of the exhibition’s curators. The design of design objects by artists is one of the secrets of the late 20th century according to Richard Tuttle and has been long overdue for an exhibition.

Some of the exhibits are presented in the bedrooms of the former Andrew Carnegie Residence, allowing the objects to be shown in a living environment, for which they were originally conceived.

“The intention of art is different than that of design, which has to be functional,” said Donald Judd. Contrary to that, Scott Burton declares his entire work as “furniture/sculpture.” Each of Burton’s art objects is also functional. The exhibits clarify these two extreme views and many possible viewpoints in between. The Austrian artist Franz West inspires interactive design: the visitors can mount colored insulating tape on a table and two chairs. The visitors, becoming designers, thus have to answer the question: design is not art, or is it?


Design is not Art

Functional Objects from Donald Judd to Rachel Whiteread

September 10, 2004 until February 27, 2004


Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum

2 East 91st Street

New York

NY 10128