Artek has been included in the MoMA exhibition entitled Century of the Child: Growing by Design, 1900-2000, taking place from July 29-November 5, 2012. The product featured will be the Children’s Chair N65, designed in 1935 by Artek founder Alvar Aalto.
Inspired by Swedish design reformer and social theorist Ellen Key’s book entitled Century of the Child (1900), and looking back through the 20th century 100 years after its publication, the exhibition, which will be housed in the Joan and Preston Robert Tisch Exhibition Gallery on the sixth floor of the museum, is the first large-scale overview of the modernist preoccupation with children and childhood as a paradigm for progressive design thinking. Key predicted that the 20th century would be one of intensified focus and progressive thinking regarding the rights, development and well-being of children and their importance to society.
The exhibition will bring together school architecture, clothing, playgrounds, toys and games, children’s hospitals and safety equipment, nurseries, furniture and books. These areas are often considered separately and are underrepresented in design history, despite their importance to the concerns, ambitions and activities of modern architects and designers. It will examine individual and collective visions for the material world of children, from utopian dreams to darker realities of political conflict and exploitation.