JERUSALEM – In June 1970, shortly after the Israel Museum opened, an international symposium was held to discuss the founding principles for a design department at the museum. The symposium recommended that the department focus on the present and future of design, rather than on its history; and that it prioritize mounting exhibitions over cultivating a permanent collection.
However, in the almost 50 years since, the collection that was not meant to be has grown and developed to encompass more than 10,000 works from past exhibitions, gifts from benefactors, and acquisitions by the various curators over the decades. The Department of Design and Architecture is now in charge of storing and preserving these objects: some of which are valuable design pieces, while others are important cultural and historical representations, and yet others are of questionable significance.
Photo by Assaf Evron
Curated by Dan Handel, the Design Matters exhibition represents a five per-cent statistical sample of these objects. The wide variety of objects on display includes mass-produced consumer products such as iPods, unique objects such as vintage cookie moulds designed in the 1930s by Franzisca Baruch, pieces by renowned designers such as Ettore Sottsass, and works by anonymous makers.