Public Programs

Three images on a colorful background. From left to right: the Netflix "N" logo, a photo of a model on the runway wearing a futuristic body suit, an image of a park, and an image of a shipping container.
Tue. October 26, 2021
5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. ET
What makes a successful portfolio? From college admissions to job-seeking, designers at every stage think about how to best showcase their work and convey their passions. This virtual program will include designer’s top tips and tricks for portfolio building, followed by a live portfolio review with four students and National Design Award winners. Along the way, audience members will be invited to participate in the review process and share peer feedback. .
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Virtual program
On the left side of the image is a graphic of colorful circles overlaid. On the right side, a young Project Invent student tries a prototype on a user's wrist while another student smiles and gets ready to help.
Wed. October 27, 2021
5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. ET
For this year’s National Design Month, Cooper Hewitt highlights some of the inspiring organizations from around the country that share the museum’s mission to educate, inspire, and empower through design. This week’s program features the work of Project Invent, a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California dedicated to empowering every high school student to become an inventor.   .
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Virtual Program
Image of the architect Carol Ross Barney next to an image of the McDonald’s Chicago Flagship, which was designed by Ross Barney Architects.
Thu. October 28, 2021
2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET
Join us on a journey behind the scenes with Ross Barney Architects, winner of the 2021 National Design Award for Architecture and Interior Design. Founder Carol Ross Barney and her team will discuss their design process with 2021 National Design Award Juror Patricia Saldaña Natke, before taking us on a virtual tour of the McDonald’s Chicago Flagship. The one-of-a-kind building radically deviates from a typical prototype restaurant and begins to ask new questions about customer experience and impact. From its solar pergola to the indoor dining areas that seamlessly connect to permeable outdoor plazas and a park, the flagship is a case study on environmental stewardship, all while creating a city oasis where people can eat, drink, and meet. .
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Virtual program
Images on a colorful background. From left to right: a building with colorful, holographic panels, the Netflix logo and the intro to "The Pacific", a person wearing a large collar.
Fri. October 29, 2021
2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET
Cooper Hewitt welcomes visitors who are blind and those with low vision to join us for a special Virtual Visual Description Tour introducing the 2021 National Design Award winners. Participants will explore select design objects or projects created by each of the winners, with time for questions and conversation throughout. .
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Pre-registration required and spots are limited. To register, email 
A child is creating a 2-dimensional pattern design using a range of shapes and colors.
Wed. November 10, 2021
4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET
From the clothes we wear to the furniture in our spaces, patterns are all around us! In this hands-on intergenerational workshop, discover how designers navigate from 2-dimensional ideas to 3-dimensional products. This workshop is inspired by the work of textile designer, Suzie Zuzek (1920-2011), whose patterns were used by the Lilly Pulitzer brand from 1962 to 1985. This intergenerational program is designed for children ages 5-12, but all are welcome to join.  Participate as a family or kids can join on their own to learn more about the basic principles and elements of design. This is a beginner workshop facilitated by a museum educator. No prior experience in design is required to participate.  .
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Virtual Program
Wed. November 17, 2021
8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. ET
Mud Frontier: Architecture at the Borderlands is a feature-length documentary about Studio Rael San Fratello’s work to connect contemporary technology with the legacy of pottery making and adobe architecture in the Southwest United States. On his ancestral land in southern Colorado, designer Ronald Rael along with his partner Virginia San Fratello 3D-print monumental structures in mud, pushing the limits of technology and materials, while uncovering a dark history along the way.  Join film director Chris J. Gauthier, associate curator of Latino design Christina L. De León, along with Studio Rael San Fratello founders Ronald Rael and Virginia San Fratello for a virtual conversation about the film following its premiere at the virtual Architecture and Design Film Festival, which will be made available to the public to watch free of charge. A live Q & A will follow.  .
Event Address:
Virtual program