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As Seen

Exhibitions that Made Architecture and Design History

Zoë Ryan (Editor), Paola Antonelli (Contributions by), Jan Boelen (Contributions by), Meredith Carruthers (Contributions by), Alison Clarke (Contributions by), Penelope Dean (Contributions by), Alison M. Fisher (Contributions by), Lindsay Garbutt (Contributions by), Karen Kice (Contributions by), Prem Krishnamurthy (Contributions by), Sylvia Lavin (Contributions by), Debbie Millman (Contributions by), Jonathan Olivares (Contributions by), Alice Rawsthorn (Contributions by), Zoë Ryan (Contributions by), Mirko Zardini (Contributions by)


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Exhibitions have long played a crucial role in defining disciplinary histories. This fascinating volume examines the impact of eleven groundbreaking architecture and design exhibitions held between 1956 and 2006, revealing how they have shaped contemporary understanding and practice of these fields. Featuring written and photographic descriptions of the shows and illuminating essays from noted curators, scholars, critics, designers, and theorists, As Seen: Exhibitions that Made Architecture and Design History explores the multifaceted ways in which exhibitions have reflected on contemporary dilemmas and opened up new processes and ways of working. Providing a fresh perspective on some of the most important exhibitions of the 20th century from America, Europe, and Japan, including This Is Tomorrow, Expo ’70, and Massive Change, this book offers a new framework for thinking about how exhibitions can function as a transformative force in the field of architecture and design.   

Praise For As Seen: Exhibitions that Made Architecture and Design History

”This book—one of the first to scrutinize the legacy of architecture exhibitions—is an essential primer on seminal design exhibitions and a touchstone for the future of architecture shows.”–Metropolis Editors, Metropolis Magazine

“For those who are interested in the expression of the theoretical and avant-garde design concepts through exhibitions (which seems to be a growing number, considering the recent explosion of biennales and triennials around the world), As Seen: Exhibitions that Made Architecture and Design History is the closest thing to a textbook on the subject.”—Matthew Messner, Architect’s Newspaper

Art Institute of Chicago, 9780300228625, 144pp.

Publication Date: October 24, 2017

About the Author

Zoë Ryan is the John H. Bryan Chair and Curator of Architecture and Design at the Art Institute of Chicago.