Since its founding in 1973, the Department of Design and Architecture has been at the forefront of introducing the field of design into Israeli culture. Over the years, a small but important permanent Israeli collection, including drawings, models, prototypes, and works by architects and designers, has been assembled. Moreover, the department’s holdings, from Europe, the United States, and Japan, broadly reflect the trends and creative genius that have shaped design since the beginning of the twentieth century. This wide-ranging selection of graphics, glass, ceramics, textiles, tableware, and industrial design has a few particular gems, such as drawings by Erich Mendelsohn and rare ROSTA Window posters. Especially strong is a collection tracing the history of chairs, from Charles Eames to Frank Gehry, and a large holding of the glass, ceramics, and furniture of Ettore Sottsass.
Through an active program of temporary exhibitions in the Palevsky Design Pavilion, the department aims to keep the professional community, students, and the general public informed of local and international trends and innovations in the fields of design, architecture, and visual communication, taken in its broadest context. Focus is also placed on the changing nature of the language and process of design, including the latest industrial technologies and new materials. Developments in digital technology, including the Internet, have not only changed production methods but have made a considerable impact on the exchange of information and ideas. Although we now live in a virtual global community, the department still places emphasis on local issues, aiming to encourage dialogue and innovation within the dynamic and changing social and political environment of the Middle East.
Curator, Department of Design and Architecture