If Jean-Claude Juncker gets his way October 2018 could see the clocks of Europe turned back an hour for the final time.

And thereby bringing to an end the long tradition of local newspapers publishing bi-annual articles documenting the curious tales and legends of town clocks, stories from the Schwarzwald on the largest and smallest cuckoo clocks, and photographs of horologists surrounded by the 350+ clocks and watches they need to reset.

For our part, we’ll miss them.

It will also mean you won’t have that extra hour the last Sunday in October to enjoy an extra leisurely visit to an architecture and/or design exhibition, so take the chance while you can…..

Our five recommendations for using that extra hour in October 2018 can be found in Hamburg, Weil am Rhein, Zürich, Paris and Helsinki.

5 New Architecture & Design Exhibitions for October 2018

Victor Papanek’s contention that “There are professions more harmful than industrial design, but only a very few of them”, remains one of the most pertinent considerations on the design profession, because it succinctly underscores that in what they do designers directly and indirectly impact not only the user/consumer of that which they design, but also on all those involved in the production, distribution and disposal of that which they design. And thereby, directly and indirectly, on our environment.

A pertinence that remains relevant despite the opinion being voiced in 1971.

With the exhibition Victor Papanek: The Politics of Design the Vitra Design Museum not only present the first major retrospective of Victor Papanek, his life and work but also investigate his wider contemporary relevance.

And indicate how designers could be less harmful, more useful…..

Victor Papanek: The Politics of Design, Vitra Design Museum

According to Germanic lore, “ein guter Septemberregen kommt nie ungelegen“, a good rain in September is never inopportune.

This year arguably more so than ever.

Similarly a good architecture and design exhibition in September is never inopportune.

And, and keeping with rain metaphors, while we can all remember what rain is, September 2018, sees a proper downpour of new architecture and design exhibitions. A downpour that is particularly opportune. Following July’s drought and its meagre 4 recommendations we have a ongoing deficit of one in our annual quota, the current deluge however means that for September 2018 we can present 6.

And so grab your umbrellas and take yourselves to an architecture and/or design exhibition this September. Our recommendations can be found in Kolding, Munich, London, Herford, Moscow and Weil am Rhein……..

5 new Architecture & Design Exhibitions September 2018

Writing to his friend Heinrich Köselitz in August 1881 Friedrich Nietzsche remarked, “My dear friend! The August sun hangs over us, the year drifts by, it is quieter and more peaceful on the mountains and in the forests. On my horizon thoughts have arisen, the likes of which I have never known….”

We like to imagine that those thoughts arose through his having visited an architecture and/or design exhibition. Were he still with us, we’d suggest he visited the following vista extending showcases opening in Saint Petersburg, Weil am Rhein, Rostock, London and Hasselt….

5 New Architecture & Design Exhibitions for August 2018

Nightclubs and discos are not only about entertainment and sensory overload, but also provide a society with means of expression and reflection.

With the exhibition Night Fever. Designing Club Culture 1960 – Today the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein explore five decades of club culture.

Night Fever. Designing Club Culture 1960 - Today, Vitra Design Museum

With the exhibition Hans J. Wegner: Designing Danish Modern the Vitra Design Museum Schaudepot explores the oeuvre of one of the Grand Doyens, and arguably one of the most widely misconstrued protagonists, of 20th century Danish design.

Hans J. Wegner: Designing Danish Modern, Vitra Design Museum Schaudepot

Arguably because Passover/Easter is early this year, every, but every, museum is opening a major exhibition in the course of March 2018, in preparation for the unofficial start of the tourist season in April.

A situation which leaves us with the daunting possibility of creating 5 such Top 5 lists. And still having some exhibitions left over.

Faced with a similar situation back in November 2017 we referred to the abundance of options which lay before us as being akin to “gardens mottled with the vibrant leaves of autumn”, here it is much more the case of lawns bestrewn with the tantalising hues of Easter Eggs. And while some will unquestionably be those disappointingly hollow ones, the majority look like being solid lumps of architecture and design endorphin loaded goodness into which to sink your teeth, and thereby celebrate the end of winter’s paucity and the coming spring.

In that sense, our top 5 new architecture and design EGGsibitions for March 2018 …. Bon appétit!!!

5 New Architecture & Design Exhibitions for March 2018

The September architecture and design exhibition recommendations are arguably the cruellest to write: the fact that the majority of the exhibitions end in the depths of the European winter meaning that as we sit here hoping that summer keeps going just a little, little, longer…. we’re forced to think about winter jackets and gloves.

And so before things get that far, best get out there and visit an exhibition!! Our five recommendations for September 2017 feature new exhibitions in Weil am Rhein, Los Angeles, Utrecht, Frankfurt and Malmö…….

smow blog 5 New Design Exhibitions for September 2017

Our picks from the new architecture and design exhibitions opening in February 2017, featuring showcases in Weil am Rhein, Falkenberg, ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Berlin and Groningen.

five new design exhibitions february 2017

The little regarded undersides of chairs....

With the opening of the Vitra Schaudepot the Vitra Campus has not only grown by a further building, but the

Fabric print by Ērika Iltnere

“All in the wild March morning I heard the angels call, It was when the moon was setting, and the

Vienna The Pearl of the Reich. Planning for Hitler at the Architekturzentrum Wien

March is a month for caution. Yes, the sun shines. Yes, the days are getting longer Yes, one can smell

NOMOS Metro watch by Berlinerblau for NOMOS Glashütte

Much as the hardest move in yoga is unrolling your yoga mat, so to is the most challenging facet about

aram gallery future stars

The inescapable chill in the morning air and the deep-seated boredom in the eyes of school aged children can only

Weil am Rhein City of Chairs Shiro Kuramata Apple Honey Rheinpark

Any self-respecting modern conurbation needs a moniker. An evocative tag line on which to hang its city marketing strategy and

Vitra Campus Vitra Slide Tower

Back in 2011 we took umbrage at the fence surrounding the Vitra Campus in Weil am Rhein and so, taking

Verner Panton Visiona 1970 Revisiting the Future at the Vitra Design Museum Gallery

Parallel to the exhibition Konstantin Grcic – Panorama, the Vitra Design Museum is revisiting perhaps the daddy of all explorations

Ulrich Müther Binz

The North wind doth blow and we shall have snow, And what will poor robin do then, poor thing? He’ll

happy birthday verner panton

It is almost certainly more by chance than design, but in the week that Verner Panton would have celebrated his

Aside from the ability to accurately focus light, Richard Sapper had a further motivation in designing his Tizio lamp: “Another

Richard Sapper Tizio Artemide

With the winter solstice behind us and the days growing noticeably longer, the Vitra Design Museum exhibition Lightopia draws slowly

When we spoke to Marc Zehntner and Mateo Kries, the joint heads of the Vitra Design Museum, they told us

“My, my, my, Delilah! Why, why, why, Delilah!”

The morning of Friday September 27th 2013 was one of those misty autumn occasions that cause SANAA’s immense new Vitra Factory Building in Weil am Rhein to merge, almost unseen, with the grey background. Even Herzog & de Meuron’s new Basel Messe complex was reduced to nothing more grand than a continuation of the uncaring monotonous sky. The glitzing, shimmering palace of high summer just the weak shadow of a memory.

And so it was perhaps fitting that the Vitra Design Museum choose this dank September morn to open their latest exhibition, “Lightopia”, an exhibition devoted to light.

For today was a clear warning, in the coming months we will all be in need of a little light.

vitra design museum lightopia

On Saturday 20.03.2010 the latest Vitra Design Museum exhibition “The Essence of Things. Design and the Art of Reduction” officially

As many of you will be aware, the construction of the VitraHaus was not without it’s controversy. For all the