Campana Brothers Select: Works from the Permanent Collection


  • Book: page from New Illustration of the Sexual System
    Written and illustrated by Robert John
    Thornton (ca. 1768–1837)
    London, England, ca. 1807
    Hand-colored engraving
    Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Institution
    Libraries, f QK91 .T49 1807
    Photo: Matt Flynn
  • On view February 15–September 28, 2008 at Cooper-Hewitt

    As the seventh curators in the Nancy and Edwin Marks Gallery exhibition series devoted to the Museum’s permanent collection, the Brazilian design team of Fernando and Humberto Campana examined Cooper-Hewitt’s collection of more than 250,000 objects housed in four curatorial departments and the National Design Library. The Campana brothers were inspired to develop a theme, which they call “Manufacturing Emotions,” and chose a diverse group of works dating from the sixteenth to the twentieth centuries to illustrate their thesis. The interweaving of disparate ideas and unconventional materials has been a hallmark of the Campana brothers’ career. In this exhibition, visitors are invited to experience how the designs the Campanas have assembled elicit emotions, a visceral response prompted by the objects themselves—two- and three-dimensional works conceived and executed using an impressive array of scales, materials, textures, and structures.

Browse the collection: creating texture, entwining, inspiring arrow, morphing nature, quizzical delicacy, solid dreams, whimsy kaleidoscope
The above tags were provided by the Campana Brothers as an alternative way of organizing the objects in the exhibition.