Green Furniture Design

November 12, 2009–March 14, 2010

Green Furniture Design focuses on the concept of sustainable design, which centers not only around a responsible use of materials and methods of manufacture but also on issues of object life span, energy usage, and recycling/disposal. The exhibition explores how 21st-century furniture makers seek to modify our aesthetic expectations—especially when it comes to forms that are multifunctional, recyclable, or made of alternative materials. Work by contemporary artists is featured alongside historical objects, exploring roots of the green idea in furniture design.

The exhibition curators also strive to achieve a level of “green curating” that cuts down on this exhibition’s carbon footprint. The team is scaling back the use of paper in design, planning, and writing practices related to the show; incorporating local objects and materials that do not require crating and shipping from far away places; and using bicycle transportation for objects from as far away as Madison and Green Bay. In the gallery, the design team will use recycled materials for labels and platforms. Electronically activated lighting will control energy consumption, as well.

This exhibition is curated by Ethan Lasser and guest curator Hongtao Zhou. Organized at the Milwaukee Art Museum by Ethan Lasser.
  • "Soft Rock" seat reusing sweatshirt and other recycled materials (By Tanya Aguiñiga)
  • "Adjustable folding chair" made only from small wood scraps—recycled and renewable (By Hongtao Zhou)
  • "Ice and snow furniture" raised by using local resources: snow, water and climate–a green life cycle with 0 negative environmental impact. (By Hongtao Zhou)
  • "Softseat" made from kraft paper and recycled cardboard (By Molo)

Photo credit by Hongtao Zhou