MoMA Architecture & Design

MoMA Architecture & Design | Department History, Collection & More

The Museum Of Modern Art or MoMA as it is more popularly known, is one of New York City's iconic spots celebrated as the home of some of the greatest works of avant-garde painting, sculpture, film, and multi-media art in the world. It is also located in prime real estate, between fifth and sixth Avenue on 53rd Street, Midtown Manhattan.

MoMA Departments

MoMA has six different curatorial departments. These include:

  • Architecture and Design
  • Drawings and Prints
  • Film
  • Media and Performance
  • Painting and Sculpture
  • Photography

MoMA Architecture & Design

MoMA Architecture & Design

MoMA's groundbreaking Department of Architecture & Design was founded in 1932. It was the world’s first curatorial department dedicated to architecture and design. Philip Johnson, the department's first director, also served as curator between 1932–34 and 1946–54. Presently, the department has a diverse collection of 28,000 works including architectural models, large-scale design objects, drawings and photographs. This celebrated reserve surveys major figures and movements from the mid-19th century to the present. One of the highlights and must-sees is the Mies van der Rohe Archive that displays works from legendary architects and designers such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Paul László, the Eameses, Isamu Noguchi, and George Nelson. It also comprises thousands of objects, from appliances, furniture, and tableware to tools, textiles, sports cars—even a helicopter. The department acquired a selection of 14 video games in 2012.

MoMA Architecture Exhibitions

Currently, MoMA's architecture department is running a bunch of exciting exhibitions - Artist Choice Exhibition series, Recent Architecture from China Exhibition, and Automania Exhibition among others. 

There are galleries displaying collections of work from timestamps of the 1880s to the 1970s and the present day. 

Upcoming exhibitions to keep a lookout for are Sophie Taeuber's Arp: Living Abstraction, Joseph E.'s Yoakum: What I Saw and Joan Jonas's Spring 2024 exhibition. 

All Your Questions About MoMA Architecture & Design Answered

Q. When did the MoMA Architecture department start?

A. MoMA's Architecture Department started in 1932 and was established under Philip C. Johnson, Chairman of the Department.

Q. How big is the MoMA Architecture collection?

A. MoMA's Architecture Collection consists of 28,000 works including architectural models, drawings and photographs.

Q. What are the different kinds of works that are a part of the MoMA architecture collection?

A. The architecture collection documents buildings through models, drawings, and photographs while the design collection comprises thousands of objects, ranging from appliances, furniture, and tableware to tools, textiles, sports cars—even a helicopter.

Q. What are some of the highlights of the MoMA architecture collections?

A. The Mies van der Rohe Archive is one of the highlights of MoAma architecture collections.

Q. Name some of the architects and designers whose works are on display as part of the MoMA Architecture collections?

A. Legendary architects and designers such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Paul László, the Eameses, Isamu Noguchi, and George Nelson's works are on display as part of the MoMA Architecture collections.