From a Prague solo show to craft in Cork, unmissable design exhibitions this January

‘Cro-Magnon,’ a solo show of Jakub Berdych of Studio Qubus on view at Galerie Kvalitář, Prague

28 Dec 2018

We’ve scoured the globe to find the most captivating, uncanny and memorable design exhibitions to see in 2018. From retrospectives and major blockbusters to thematic exhibitions and solo shows, here’s the design events we are not missing this month...

Cro-Magnon at Galerie Kvalitář, Prague

Prague-based designer and artist Jakub Berdych of Studio Qubus presents his conceptual thinking at this solo show ‘Cro-Magnon’ in Prague. He returns to his background in stonemasonry by exhibiting monumental stone carved into rough geometrical sculptures. These large-scale objects exude a poetic wittiness while delving into wider sociological explorations of the contemporary world too. Berdych cleverly melds primitive, prehistoric monuments that are inspired by the Stone Age with current topics of consumerism and politics. The finishing touch of the show is a symbolical centrepiece, a marble plate engraved with the notorious mathematical formula of Albert Einstein: E = mc2. Writer: Adam Štěch

Until 21 February. Senovážné nám. 1628/17, 110 00 Nové Město, Czechia

Earth, Wind and Fire: Made in Cork Contemporary at Crawford Art Gallery, Cork

This celebration of the city of Cork’s makers is curated by Anne Boddaert and explores ancient processes to newer technologies in artisan craft. Showcasing the works of six Irish makers, Nuala O’Donovan; Eoin Turner; Alex Pentek; Mary Palmer; Anne Kiely and Joseph Walsh, the exhibition examines how these artists engage with the natural environment and materials, like Walsh’s sinuous 2010 Enignum bed (pictured) where he has layered strips of wood to build the curiously curvaceous structure. Photography: Jed Niezgoda. Writer: Sujata Burman

Until 17 February 2019. Emmett Pl, Centre, Cork, Ireland

‘Urban Daydreaming’ by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec at HKDI Gallery, Hong Kong

French industrial designers Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec’s trademark thoughtful thinking brings a new perspective to urban planning with a wideranging, immersive installation of 14 models and videos that reflect on nature in public spaces. ‘Some are romantic ideas while others are old principles translated in a new way,’ Ronan says. ‘It is not about being prescriptive; we simply want to raise ideas about how nature interacts with the city.’

This is the first time the brothers have worked on an urban scale, exploring creative solutions such as suspended, jungle-like forests and minimalist waterways that snake through the city. It also includes Clouds, an intriguing melding of organic and geometrical forms that has already been built in Miami’s design district, integrating an elegantly simple floating garden, and blue and green glass that generates enchanting shadows and colour variations. Writer: Catherine Shaw

Until17 February 2019; 3 King Ling Road, Tseung Kwan O

‘Akari: Sculpture by Other Means’ at Noguchi Museum, New York

The Noguchi Museum is showing an exhibition dedicated to Isamu Noguchi’s modular, collapsible ‘Akari’ lanterns. Starting in 1951, Noguchi designed over 200 Akari models in his lifetime, as a way of marrying an ancient paper craft with electricity. The exhibition includes the largest Akari ever created, the two-metre-wide Akari 200D, made for the 1986 Venice Biennale, in addition to various archival materials. A second, concurrent exhibition, ‘Akari Unfolded: A Collection’, features 26 Akari-inspired lamps created by French studio Ymer & Malta in partnership with Nendo, Sebastian Bergne, Stephen Burks, Océane Delain, Benjamin Graindorge, and Sylvain Rieu-Piquet. Pictured: Nendo’s modern interpretation of the light. Courtesy: Ymer & Malta

Until 27 January 2019; Noguchi Museum, 9-01 33rd Rd, Queens, NY 11106