Current Exhibitions

Installation view of Making | Breaking exhibition.

Making | Breaking: New Arrivals

Enignum Free Form Chair, 2014; Designed and made by Joseph Walsh (Irish, b. 1979) and Joseph Walsh Studio (Cork, Ireland);

Through November 19, 2017

More than forty recent contemporary acquisitions from the museum’s permanent collection, as well as sketches, prototypes, and videos illuminating the designers’ groundbreaking design thinking. These new designs push the boundaries of materials, making, and form.

Learn more about Making | Breaking.

Esperanza Spalding Selects

through january 7, 2018

The 15th installation of Cooper Hewitt’s Selects exhibition series in which designers, artists, architects, and public figures are invited to examine and interpret the museum’s collection of more than 210,000 objects. Through her curation of nearly 40 drawings, prints, textiles, jewelry, and furniture, as well as works from the Smithsonian Design Library, musician and four-time Grammy Award-winner Esperanza Spalding explores how design—like music—both evolves and devolves in the process of transforming.

Learn more about Esperanza Spalding Selects.

Moustiers Ceramics: Gifts from the Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw Collection

A faience jardiniere produced in Moustiers, France during the 18th century.

Through April 29, 2018

Showcasing nearly 60 works of faience, alongside related prints and textiles, produced in Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, France during the 18th century, the exhibition celebrates the substantial gift of Moustiers ceramics from the Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw collection to Cooper Hewitt.

Learn more about Moustiers Ceramics: Gifts from the Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw Collection.

Designing the new cooper hewitt

The museum itself is a grand design object, as shown in the ground-floor exhibition Designing the New Cooper Hewitt. Design briefs, sketches, photographs, blueprints and other illustrations from the team of designers reveals the process behind three years of renovation and transformation at Cooper Hewitt.

Passion for the Exotic: Japonism

Through June 18, 2018

Showcasing nearly 50 works from the permanent collection installed in the Teak Room, this focused exhibition celebrates the inspired dialogue between Western design and Japanese aesthetics in the late 19th century.

Learn more about Japonism.

Hewitt Sisters Collect

Gold birdcage with jade and amethyst string of beads coming from the top and fancy bird toys and perches inside.

The first exhibition to share the remarkable story of Eleanor and Sarah Hewitt, who in 1897 established a museum within Cooper Union, recognizes their central role in the museum’s founding and genesis of the core collection.

Learn more about Hewitt Sisters Collect.

Immersion Room

Cooper Hewitt’s extraordinary collection of wallcoverings is featured in a new high-tech space, the Immersion Room, offering visitors the unprecedented experience of using the Pen to select digital images of wallpapers or sketch their own design and then project them onto the walls at full scale to see their impact. More than an entertaining interactive experience, the Immersion Room gives museum visitors their first opportunity to discover Cooper Hewitt’s wallcoverings as they were intended to be viewed.

Learn more about the Immersion Room.

Models & Prototypes Gallery

The second floor of Cooper Hewitt features a Models & Prototypes gallery, where rotating installations provide insights into the important role of models in the design process. Currently, the gallery showcases the exceptional models of staircases donated to Cooper Hewitt by Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw.

Learn more about the Models & Prototypes gallery.

Exhibition supporters

Esperanza Spalding Selects is made possible by the Marks Family Foundation Endowment Fund. In-kind support for the site-specific installation is provided by ZGF Architects. Piano provided by Steinway & Sons.

Digital Experience supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies.

Exhibitions of the permanent collection are made possible by major support from Nancy Marks. Additional support is provided by Elizabeth and Lee Ainslie and the Henry Luce Foundation.

Hewitt Sisters Collect is made possible by generous support from Nancy Marks. Additional support is provided by Margery and Edgar Masinter and the Smithsonian Women’s Committee.

The Immersion Room is made possible by major support from Amita and Purnendu Chatterjee.

Process Lab is made possible by major support from Alice Gottesman.

Passion for the Exotic: Japonism is made possible in part by The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.