Cover and interior pages of the Design at Home activity book.
Cooper Hewitt Develops Design at Home Activity Book to Bridge the Digital Divide
Cooper Hewitt’s Design at Home activity book was developed to increase educational equity in communities with less access to digital tools and platforms. Geared towards a multi-generational audience, it includes open-ended design prompts, hands-on activities, and coloring pages.
Image features a design drawing for a retail kiosk, consisting of a red platform with wheels supporting a black pyramid surmounted by a rectangle with a photograph of fashion designer Willi Smith in profile. A rectangular, black and white banner, proclaiming “WilliWear/WilliSmith” is on a pole at the top. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
Radical Retail
In celebration of LGBTQ+ Pride Month, June Object of the Week posts highlight LGBTQ+ designers and design in the collection.  In 1987, artist and designer Dan Friedman was commissioned by his friends and collaborators Willi Smith and Laurie Mallet to design the interior of a new Paris retail store for their clothing brand WilliWear. In...
In profile, Ralph Caplan, a white man with white hair in advanced age wearing a suit, at a podium. Behind him is a red wall.
Remembering Ralph Caplan
Author: Ellen Lupton Ralph Caplan (1925–2020) was a writer and thinker. His 1982 book By Design: Why There Are No Locks on the Bathroom Doors in the Hotel Louis XIV, and Other Object Lessons appeared at a time when few people were addressing the everyday impact of design. His 2005 book Cracking the Whip is...
A handdrawn banner shows the faces of dozens of people of many skintones and gender expressions
A Message to Our Community
We are heartbroken and anguished by recent events. As Smithsonian Institution Secretary Lonnie Bunch III stated, “Once again, we struggle to make sense of the senseless. Once again, we bear witness to our country’s troubled history of racial violence, from Freddie Gray and Eric Garner to Sandra Bland and Trayvon Martin. Once again, we try...
Image features: Silk embroidery in pale colors on dark blue linen. A horizontally and vertically symmetrical floral pattern in the Morris style. Please scroll to read the blog post about this object.
The Titan’s Daughter
In celebration of LGBTQ+ Pride Month, June Object of the Week posts highlight LGBTQ+ designers and design in the collection. A version of this post was originally published on June 20, 2016. May Morris will forever be in the shadow of her famous father William Morris, the chief protagonist of the English Arts and Crafts movement,...
A painterly wallpaper depicting a regal peacock surrounded by flowers
Discover Smithsonian Open Access with Treasures from the Cooper Hewitt Collection
This year, the Smithsonian Institution launched its Open Access initiative. Smithsonian Open Access invites you to share, remix, and reuse millions of the Smithsonian’s images—right now, without asking.  Discover Smithsonian Open Access with these five designs drawn from the Cooper Hewitt collection. What will you create?  PRINT, FAUST IN HIS STUDY, CA. 1652, Rembrandt Harmensz...
Image features a young girl sitting at a table with a tool in her hand, modeling a figurine in clay. She faces right, in profile. A potted plant or flower arrangement is on the table, at right. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
Virginia Modeling
Jerome Myers always had a sketchbook close at hand. When weather prevented him from sketching city life in New York, he would turn instead to self-portraits or drawings of his family. In this sketch, the artist’s daughter—Virginia—sits at a table, making a small figurine out of clay. Born in Petersburg, Virginia, Myers moved with his...
Image features a thin-walled molded plywood form contoured to follow the shape of the back of a leg. There are eight openings over the length of the splint to accommodate straps for securing an injured leg.
Designed To Serve
In honor of Memorial Day, as we remember those who lost their lives in service, we wanted to highlight a story of design about aiding those who served. In 1942, Dr. Wendell Scott, a surgeon in the United States Navy based in San Diego, traveled to Los Angeles to visit an old friend, Charles, and...
Keith Godard (1938-2020)
Keith Godard was playful, funny, irreverent, and smart. Decked out in dapper bow ties and bright red shoes, he brought bubbles of joy to every occasion. He and Studio Works, the company he founded in 1986, contributed mightily to life in New York City. His works are preserved in many museum collections, including Cooper Hewitt,...