General information

It’s Bugged:
Insects’ Role in Design
Jan. 8-April 22

It’s Bugged: Insects’ Role in Design

January 8 – April 22, 2018

In this exhibition we look at two sides of the relationship between people and insects. The first side shows how makers, designers, architects, and artists draw upon nature’s patterns to create beautiful and useful materials and structures. The other side of this relationship involves the collaboration with insects as producers of raw materials, such as harvested silk and red dye made from cochineals. While the insects are (likely!) not conscious of this duality, the outcomes are useful for insects and for people in different ways. This makes our relationship with them complex and compelling.

“The inspiration we draw from the natural world is endless,” said Adrienne McGraw, exhibition curator. ”So the real challenge in the exhibit was focusing our story to the links between insects and textiles and forms. We started by selecting key pieces from the Design Collection and works from collaborating artists. The connection to insects could then be explored. Some of these relationships are centuries old, while other ways people are using insects and insect behavior is relatively new. What’s exciting to me is to think about all the new products, designs, and technologies that are still to come as people continue to be inspired by insects. And what better place to encourage that than a university setting where so much creative work is already going on. I really hope visitors to the exhibit come away with a new appreciation for bugs and their role in our lives.”

The Design Museum, part of the College of Letters and Science, is in Cruess Hall, Room 124. It is free and open weekdays noon to 4 p.m. and Sunday 2 to 4 p.m.

There will be two special Saturday events when the Design Museum is open 12-4pm. On Feb. 17 for Biodiversity Museum Day and April 21 for Picnic Day.

Click Visit the Design Museum for map and parking information.

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