It was announced recently that New York’s Museum of Modern Art plans to close their galleries dedicated to design and architecture. This decision comes in part with the museum’s $440 million expansion plan, which began earlier this year, though it is not clear if the renovation will include designated architecture and design galleries. MoMA is known for having the world’s first architecture and design department, and for collecting works ranging from architectural models to works on paper to (of course, this being MoMA) design objects.
During this expansion, the museum’s galleries will be “repurposed for general collection and themed exhibitions.” It is quite possible as well that MoMA will start following the museum world’s trend of incorporating architecture and design objects into normal exhibitions in an effort to contextualize works on view. While this would be a good use of the museum’s collection, it could quite possibly rob design and architecture of its dedicated spotlight. (Meanwhile, in the museum shop, MoMA seems to pride itself on its design products). And we’ll wait to see if the renovation will give architecture and design a new space to call their own.