Beauty—Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial

Edited and with introduction by Andrea Lipps and Ellen Lupton
Foreword by Caroline Baumann
Interviews by Andrea Lipps, Ellen Lupton, Suvi Saloniemi, and others
Organized by Pamela Horn

Designed by Content Object, Kimberly Varella
Softcover with French Fold: 276 pages
Publisher: Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Museum of Design, 2015
ISBN: 978-1942303114
Dimensions: 9 × 12.5 in.
Separations: Embassy Graphics, Winnipeg, MB, Canada
Printing: Print Plus Limited, Hong Kong

Beauty—the book, born out of Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum's 2015 Triennial of the same name, curated by Andrea Lipps and Ellen Lupton—showcases some of the most exciting and provocative design created around the globe during the past three years. These pages aim not to emphasize the hidden beauty in the everyday—a beloved teapot or favorite shoe—but to locate transformational beauty in contemporary design that is exuberant, ethereal, atmospheric, experiential, exceptional, or sublime. Sixty-two designers represent a vast range of disciplines from architecture, fashion, digital, graphic, and product design, to interiors, hair, nail, and lighting design. The objects featured cause us to take pause, catch our breath, and get lost in our pursuit to understand or explain them.

“Designed by the innovative Kimberly Varella, the book is itself a tactile, fluid, and provocative interpretation of beauty. Varella's design provides unexpected points of entry, playing with the concepts of beauty by using reflective surfaces, hot pink thread weaving pages together, and a "heart" of the book, from which all else flows.”

Ethereal, Intricate, Extravagant, Transformative, Transgressive, Elemental, and Emergent Beauty are the seven themes. Each section includes the individual designers in conversation with the curators about her or his process and beauty's differing forms, punctuated by rich galleries of their work, generating the ultimate feast for the senses.

Photography by Ian Byers-Gamber
Text from Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Museum of Design