Het Nieuwe Instituut Online

To conclude the exhibition Art on Display 1949-69, Guus Beumer and Aric Chen will talk to the curators, Penelope Curtis and Dirk van den Heuvel, about what the show’s seminal designs by Carlo Scarpa, Aldo van Eyck, Lina Bo Bardi, Alison and Peter Smithson and others say about the role of exhibitions in addressing the urgencies of our times. Follow the event through a live stream on Het Nieuwe Instituut Live.

Guus Beumer is the former artistic and general director of Het Nieuwe Instituut; Aric Chen succeeded him on 1 May this year. Art on Display 1949-69 was initiated by Penelope Curtis, director of the Calouste Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon. She invited Dirk van den Heuvel, who is head of the Jaap Bakema Study Centre at Het Nieuwe Instituut and TU Delft, to develop the exhibition together, based on a shared interest in the role of the architect in the museum and the design of exhibitions. The result was two versions of Art on Display, the first of which was shown in Lisbon in 2019-2020, and the second in Rotterdam in 2020-2021.

The discussion during this ‘finissage’ will be about the exhibition as a unique medium for design and discourse. The exhibition is not merely a platform for (re)presentation: it is also a driver for continuous research into the institutional collection and ambitions, as well as into urgent social questions in relation to architecture, design and digital culture, from the much-needed multivocality to new ecological thinking.

Art on Display 1949-69

The Art on Display exhibition focuses specifically on exhibition design, with special attention for the relationship between the visitor and the works on display. In the form of 1: 1 reconstructions, the exhibition brings together some of the most progressive post-war exhibition designs by architects. Seven installations feature designs by Carlo Scarpa, Franco Albini and Franca Helg, Lina Bo Bardi, Aldo van Eyck and Alison and Peter Smithson. The whole is staged in a spatial design by Jo Taillieu Architecten. Goda Budvytyte is responsible for the graphic design.

The Art on Display catalogue is on sale until 6 June in NAI Booksellers' pop-up store in the exhibition space. Then online and in the store in the foyer.


The programme will be live streamed on Het Nieuwe Instituut Live

  • 2.30pm A short walk-through and introduction to the exhibition.
  • 3pm Discussion with Guus Beumer, Penelope Curtis, Aric Chen and Dirk van den Heuvel.
  • 4pm Close.