The Jean Pigozzi African Art Collection

Flow of Forms / Forms of Flow. Design Histories between Africa and Europe, The Faculty of History and Arts – Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich, Germany

from 03/02/2017 to 12/03/2017

Those who are familiar with artistic production and the cultural debates of Africa and its diaspora are sure to have heard about the innovative fashion and product design scenes on the continent as well. At international design fairs, in exhibitions and in the media, everyone is talking about “African design” – a style that combines established ideas of design with everyday demands and fast-paced technological development, and interconnects them across the globe. But what dynamics are at work behind this new catchphrase? Have depictions of “African design” accurately described this trend so far?

In collaboration with the Architecture Museum of the TU Munich, the Museum “Fünf Kontinente”, and the Kunstraum München, the Institute for Art History at the LMU Munich is organising the exhibition project “Flow of Forms / Forms of Flow” to address these questions and offer a new perspective on design history.
In cooperation with the Berlin-based model project Cucula - Refugees Company for Crafts and Design, Cheick Diallo/Diallo Design and the Centre La Médina Art & Culture in Mali, stationary interventions in Munich will present a transcultural, historically-interconnected perspective which starkly contrasts typical survey shows on African design.

The project highlights five thematic areas at four venues in Munich. These will emphasise the interactions, as well as the processes of exchange and translation, in which design serves a mediating function: Material Morphosis (Stoff-Wechsel), Forms of Modernity, Forms of Participation/Cooperation, Transform(N)ation and Speculative Forms. The project attempts to overcome Eurocentric dichotomies, e.g. traditional and modern, hand-crafted and industrial, formal and informal, and replace our conventional one-sided view of design history with a multitude of global design histories.

Artistic directors: Kerstin Pinther (DE), Alexandra Weigand (DE). In collaboration with Art History students at the LMU Munich


Downloads (PDF files):
Flow of Forms_Exposé English (152 KByte)
Flow of Forms_Exposé Français (162 KByte)
Link to the exhibition website