Design for a Living World at Coral Gables Museum

ADDED ON August 11, 2012 1 COMMENTS

design for a living world coral gables

“I don’t think that the environmental issue is a fad. I really don’t. I think it’s like a growing concern. And it’s gonna be based on economics more than anything. It’s like all of a sudden it’s gonna dawn on these greedy people that they can make a lot of money if they conserve and if they learn how to be more eco-friendly. And it’s gonna become a big industry, and then it’s gonna be great.” – Isaac Mizrahi

Do you ever wonder where the raw materials that make up the products we use everyday come from?

Design for a Living World, an exhibition on display at the Coral Gables Museum, asks us to think about the products we use, where they come from, how they are made and the impacts they have on our planet.

The exhibition was organized by The Nature Conservancy, the world’s leading conservation organization dedicated to protecting ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people since 1951.

If ever you needed an excuse to visit the Coral Gables Museum, this is it.

The Nature Conservancy invited 10 designers to create 10 sustainable objects from 10 places where the Conservancy works around the world. Plywood, vegetable ivory, rosewood, bamboo, wool and other sustainable materials were transformed into fascinating objects that serve more as prototypes that explore the balance between human use and natural regeneration than actual products.

isaac mizrahi salmon leather dress

Isaac Mizrahi, the spirited fashion designer, used Alaskan salmon skin leather, typically a waste product of the salmon industry, to create a dress and matching high heels. Using salmon leather in fashion design could help reduce waste in Alaska’s largest fishing industry and stimulate local economies.

design for a living world coral gables

Christien Meindertsma, a Dutch textile designer, used certified organic wool from the Conservancy’s Lava Lake Ranch in Idaho to create a hand-knitted “flock” carpet.

design for a living world coral gables

Abbott Miller, a graphic designer and curator of the show, used FSC-certified Bolivian plywood to create these chairs. His design yields 3 chairs per piece of plywood, producing minimal waste.

design for a living world coral gables

Maya Lin, an architect, artist and furniture designer, used FSC-certified red maple from the banks of the Upper St. John River in Maine to create the Terra bench.

design for a living world coral gables

Ezri Tarazi, an Israeli industrial and furniture designer, used Bamboo to create totem-like structures (including this chaise lounge) for the home. Bamboo generates more oxygen than trees and absorbs large amounts of carbon while providing humans with a range of uses.

The exhibition also features video interviews of the designers, sketches, models and design commissions, along with large-scale photographs by photojournalist Ami Vitale.

Design for a Living World runs now through October 25, 2012 at the Coral Gables Museum located at 285 Aragon Ave Coral Gables, FL 33134. For more information on museum hours and admission fees, visit their website at

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One Response to “Design for a Living World at Coral Gables Museum”

  1. February 10, 2014 at 5:50 pm, 6th Annual Miami New Times Artopia at the Coral Gables Museum | Adrian Salgado said:

    […] 6th edition of Artopia will be held at the Coral Gables Museum in Downtown Coral Gables on Thursday, February 27th. General admission begins at 7pm. VIP begins […]


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