Skip to main content

For the 13th and for the time being last part of its experimental Design Lab series, the Museum of Decorative Arts has invited design researchers from the Cluster of Excellence "Matters of Activity. Image Space Material" cluster of excellence at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin to explore points of contact and ruptures between traditional crafts and the latest developments at the interface of materials research, design, technology and architecture. 

Veranstaltungen in Berlin: Design Lab #13: Material Legacies
Emile De Visscher

The exhibition project brings together artefacts from the collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts with work-in-progress installations by designers and researchers from the Cluster of Excellence to initiate a dialogue on the historical, present and future conditions of materiality. "Material Legacies" unfolds the diverse interrelationships that arise from and with materials. 

Material past, present and future
Through an exploration of a range of different materials and techniques, the exhibition problematises unsustainable pasts and presents on the one hand, and on the other hand, it sketches the notion of possible material futures. This is done through an exploration of shape-changing surfaces and phase-changing textiles, as well as the processes of lime formation, mineralisation and sedimentation. 

Materials in context
In the project, each of the exhibits was examined in its socio-cultural, economic and political context. The focus was on questions such as "How can we make better use of leftover material?", "What can we learn from the transfer of biological processes to material processing?" and "What do materials and artefacts teach us about our relationship to the environment?". 

Participating researchers
Michaela Büsse, Mason Dean, Karola Dierichs, Michaela Eder, Lorenzo Guiducci, Johanna Hehemeyer-Cürten, Heidi Jalkh, Agata Kycia, Claudia Mareis, John A. Nyakatura, Felix Rasehorn, Iva Rešetar, Patricia Ribault, Christiane Sauer, Igor Sauer, Maxie Schneider, Robert Stock, Josephine Shone, Emile de Visscher, Charlett Wenig. 

The "Matters of Activity" Cluster of Excellence
"Matters of Activity. Image Space Material" is an interdisciplinary research group that aims to lay the foundations for a new culture of materials. It is based at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and conducts research at the interface of biology and technology, mind and material, nature and culture. The Cluster of Excellence "Matters of Activity" is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) as part of the Excellence Strategy of the German federal and state governments. Further information: www.matters-of-activity.de 

About the "Design Lab" series
Since 2019, the exhibition series "Design Lab" has invited selected design studios, students and researchers to present current projects and to enter into a discourse with the collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts. The series is curated by Claudia Banz, curator for design at the Museum of Decorative Arts.
Additional information
Opening hours: Tue - Fri 10 am - 6 pm, Sat + Sun 11 am - 6 pm