12:21 PM

Designs for Different Futures: Public Programs

Philadelphia Museum of Art: October 22, 2019–March 8, 2020
Press Preview: October 17, 2019, 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m. (remarks at 10:00 a.m.). More details.

View Exhibition Press Release 

Futures Therapy Lab

Thinking about possible futures is both exhilarating and anxiety-making. The Futures Therapy Lab is a space for conversation, critique, and creativity for those considering the ideas set forth in Designs for Different Futures. Work it out in the Lab through reading reflection, and art making. Part of the exhibition experience, the lab is open to visitors of all ages and is free with museum admission. Drop-in daily during museum hours. Open late Wednesdays and Fridays, until 8:45 p.m.

In addition to daily drop-in activities, the Lab will host a series of weekly happenings:

Artists in the Lab
Artists and designers share their work through talks, demonstrations, and workshops. Wednesday Nights, 5:00–8:45 p.m.

The Designer is In
Talk it out. One-on-one sessions with local designers offer new perspectives on your everyday life. Thursdays & Saturdays, 2:00–4:00 p.m.

Sci-Fi Sundays
Drop-in readings that explore narratives of the future. Select Sundays, 2:00–3:00pm


Artists in the Lab

Artist in the Lab: Grace Duong and Wesley Flash on Tarot and Prophecy

October 23, 2019 | 6:00–8:00 p.m. | Futures Therapy Lab and Great Stair Hall

Get present, create, and dive deeper. Work with designer and illustrator Grace Duong to create your own tarot card, then learn more about the art of tarot with Wesley Flash. Tarot tells a story; it isn’t always about the future itself. Find out your own story and share stories with others. Drop-ins welcome.

Artist in the Lab: Simon Kim and Mark Yim on Quori

October 30, 2019 | 6:30 p.m. | Dorrance Galleries

Meet Simon Kim and Mark Yim, the creators of Quori, one of the robots on view in the exhibition, and hear about the design and engineering that informed this research robot. Drop-ins welcome.

Simon Kim, AIA, OAA, is Principal of Ibañez Kim Architects and an Associate Professor at the University of Pennsylvania. Mark Yim is the Asa Whitney Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania and Director of the GRASP lab. Mark and Simon work together as directors of Immersive Kinematics Lab , along with associate Mariana Ibañez.

Perspectives Gallery Talks: Gavin Kenneally on Ghost Minitaur

November 6 | 6:30 p.m. | Dorrance Galleries

Gavin Kenneally shares the process of designing Ghost Minitaur, a four-legged robot capable of exploring dangerous territory. His fifteen-minute talk is followed by a conversation in the gallery. ​Drop-ins welcome.

Kenneally is the chief product officer and mechatronics lead for Ghost Robotics, where he works to make legged robots a commercial reality. Perspectives Gallery Talks are conversations about art and design through a contemporary lens.

Artist in the Lab: The Tempestry Project on Climate Change and Fiber Art

November 13, 2019 | 6:00–8:00 p.m. | Futures Therapy Lab

Join The Tempestry Project as they weave together knitting and fiber arts with the study of climate, to visualize climate change data in a way that’s accurate, tangible, and beautiful. By building a bridge between hard data and our own softer experiences to take comfort in tackling this heated topic, through the act of making. Drop-ins welcome.

Artist in the Lab: Ane Crabtree on Costuming Dystopia

November 20, 2019 | 6:30 p.m. | The Eli Kirk Price Room

Ane Crabtree designed the iconic handmaid costume seen in the Emmy Award winning Hulu series The Handmaid’s Tale and on view in the exhibition Design for Different Futures. Hear about the role costume design can play in creating alternate worlds in series such as The Handmaid’s Tale and Westworld as well as upcoming projects. Free ticket required.

Crabtree is a costume designer for film and television. Born to a white father and a mother of Okinawan descent, Crabtree grew up in Kentucky before studying fine arts and Shakespeare at Harlaxton College in Lincolnshire, England and fashion design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. She designed the costumes for Seasons One and Two for The Handmaid’s Tale starring Elizabeth Moss, Joseph Fiennes, Samira Wiley, Max Minghella, Yvonne Strahovski, O-T Fagbenle, Alexis Bledel, Madeline Brewer, Ann Dowd, and Amanda Brugel. Her recent work includes the Dee Rees and Cassian Elwes follow up film to Mudbound, The Last Thing He Wanted, and the Scottfree/FOX pilot for The Passage. Crabtree has been nominated for a Costume Design Guild Award for PanAm (2012), Masters of Sex (2015), and Westworld (2016), and won for The Handmaid’s Tale (2018). She also received two Emmy nominations for The Handmaid’s Tale (2017 & 2018). She is currently working on the creative presentation of The Kyd’s Exquisite Follies, a futuristic afro-punk, steam funk musical with Dee Rees and Cassian Elwes.

Artist in the Lab: Lucy Jones on Seated Design

January 8, 2020 | 6:30 p.m. | Futures Therapy Lab

Believing that designers should share, design, develop and listen to the needs of all individuals, Lucy Jones created “Seated Design,” fashion built specifically for the seated, instead of the standing, body. She is joined in conversation with Katie Samson, arts educator and disability rights advocate. Drop-ins welcome.

Artist in the Lab: Terraform ONE on Cricket Shelter, Adam Chad Brody and Jude Tallichet, Cricket Concert

Jan 15, 2020 | 6:30 p.m. | Futures Therapy Lab

Vivian Kuan and Nicolas Gervasi from Terreform ONE, an architecture and urban-design research group, discuss how their Cricket Shelter and other projects work to design against extinction.

Join farmer-artist-musicians Adam Chad Brody and Jude Tallichet as they perform alongside live crickets to explore how insects can become kin, housemates, collaborators and entertainers—in addition to being a source of nourishment. Drop-ins welcome.

Artist in the Lab: Ryan Strand Greenberg on The History of Now

Jan 22, 2020 | 6:00–8:00 p.m. | Futures Therapy Lab

Join photographer and curator of public art Ryan Strand Greenberg for an evening of investigation, creation, and reflection as we ask ourselves as individuals and as a community, “What about now should define the history we pass on to the future?” Drop-ins welcome.

Artist in the Lab: Mary Maggic on Housewives Making Drugs

Jan 29, 2020 | 6:30 p.m. | The Eli Kirk Price Room

Artist Mary Maggic explores body and gender politics and environmental toxicity through their artistic research in DIY hormone hacking, expanding on issues raised by their speculative video Housewives Making Drugs on view in the exhibition Designs for Different Futures. The event will include a urine-hormone micro-performance (Molecular Queering Agency). Free ticket required.

Artist in the Lab: Lin Yee Yuan on Mold Magazine

February 12, 2020 | 6:30 p.m. | Futures Therapy Lab

How will our relationship to food change in the future? LinYee Yuan, founder and editor of MOLD magazine, is joined in conversation with local food activists to consider how designers can address the coming international food crisis. Drop-ins welcome.

Artist in the Lab: Orkan Telhan on Breakfast Before Extinction

February 19, 2020 | 6:30 p.m. | The Eli Kirk Price Room

What possibilities do microorganisms offer in a time of climate crisis, food scarcity, and biodiversity loss? Artist and biological designer Orkan Telhan explores the different roles microorganisms can play for shaping the future of the human diet. Free ticket required.

Artist in the Lab: Adrienne / Swim Pony on The End

February 26, 2020 | 6:30 p.m. | Futures Therapy Lab

Swim Pony's Adrienne Mackey shares insights and hands-on experience gathered from creating THE END – a month-long immersive theatrical that helped audiences confront fears around life’s end, through daily, darkly playful interactions. Drop-ins welcome.

Artist in the Lab: Kate Cuffari on Experimental Materials in the Museum

March 4, 2020 | 6:30 p.m. | Dorrance Galleries

Perspectives Gallery Talk with Kate Cuffari on the challenges that materials such as sweat and seaweed in Designs for Different Futures offer in terms of museum presentation and conversation. Drop-ins welcome.

Kate Cuffari is the Associate Conservator of Decorative Arts and Sculpture at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Perspectives Gallery Talks are conversations about art and design through a contemporary lens.


The Designer Is In

Thursdays & Saturdays | 2:00–4:00 p.m. | Futures Therapy Lab
Talk it out. One-on-one sessions with local designers offer new perspectives on your everyday life.

October 24 & 26, 2019
Maia Chao, Look at Art, Get Paid

November 7 & 9, 2019
Paul Farber, Monument Lab

November 14 & 16, 2019
Stephanie Carlisle, KieranTimberlake and Uncertain Terrain

November 21 & 23, 2019
Andrew Wit, WITO

December 5, 7, 12 & 14, 2019
Yadan Luo, OLIN

December 19 & 21, 2019
Paul Farber, Monument Lab

January 9, 11, 16, & 18, 2020
Michelle Johnson, University of Pennsylvania

January 23 & 25, 2020
Andrew Wit, WITO

January 30, February 1, 6, & 8, 2020
Scott Page, Interface Studios

February 13, 15, 20, & 22, 2020
Raja Schaar, Drexel University

February 27 & 29, March 5 & 7, 2020
Tiny WPA


Sci-Fi Sundays

Sundays | 2:00–3:00 p.m. | Meet in the Dorrance Galleries

Drop-in readings that explore narratives of the future. Artists and authors read their favorite passages from science fiction novels, comic books and literary magazines. Program free after museum admission.

October 27, 2019: Ariell Johnson, Amalgam Comics

November 10, 2019: Shivon Love

November 17, 2019: Blue Stoop

November 24, 2019: Wooden Shoe

December 8, 2019: Dr. Walter Greason

December 15, 2019: Li Sumpter, MythMedia Studios

December 22, 2019: Galactic Philadelphia

January 12, 2020: Free Library of Philadelphia

January 19, 2020: Liz Barr

January 26, 2020: Ulises

February 9, 2020: Chef Omar Tate

February 16, 2020: Jasmine Smith, Library Co. of Philadelphia

February 23, 2020: Little Berlin Zine Library

March 8, 2020: Maori Holmes, BlackStar Film Festival


Drink & Draw

Select Wednesdays | 6:00–8:00 p.m. | Great Stair Hall

Sip and sketch with local artists on the first Wednesday of each month. Drawing materials provided; bar drinks available for purchase. Included with Pay What You Wish admission.

Drink & Draw with Mary Kate McDevitt
November 6, 2019 | 6:00–8:00 p.m. | Great Stair Hall

Drink & Draw with Ladies Wine and Design
February 5, 2020 | 6:00–8:00 p.m. | Great Stair Hall

Drink & Draw with Jordan Sondler
March 4, 2020 | 6:00–8:00 p.m. | Great Stair Hall


Family Festival: Family Futures

November 3, 2019 | 10:00 a.m. | Main Building

How does design shape modern—and future—families? Visitors of all ages envision their future, from products and policies to art and activism with designer Alexis Hope. Included with Pay What You Wish admission.

Balcony Studio (All Ages)
10:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
Create and design for your future self.

Mini Tours (Best for Kids ages 3-10)
11:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m.
Time travel through the galleries as a family.

Story Shares (Grown-up Conversations; Kids Welcome)
11:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m.
Talk family leave and more with Alexis Hope, whose advocacy is featured in the exhibition.

Stroller Tour (Grown-ups with Babies)
10:30 a.m. & 2:00 p.m.
Tours for those with the newest generation of artists in tow.

BAE Café: Breastfeeding Awareness & Empowerment (Grown-ups with Babies)
12:00 p.m.
Bring your breast, chest, or bottle to BAE Café and chat with other caregivers and feeding advocates.



The Irma and Herbert Barness Endowed Lecture

Why is Artificial Intelligence a Woman?

November 16, 2019 | 2:00 p.m. | Perelman Auditorium

Even as gender is increasingly debated as fluid rather than binary, designers of future-oriented technologies often represent artificial intelligence through feminine stereotypes. This panel examines the gendered ways that AI and robotics are designed and the impacts that has on our futures. Research scientist Julie Carpenter will discuss her work on Q, a gender-neutral voice for use in voice assistive technologies that offers an alternative to the familiar voices of Siri and Alexa. Bruce Duncan of the Terasem Movement Foundation will present the android BINA48, which is included in a work in Designs for Different Futures and whose form is unusually modelled on a real person. Art historian Jennifer Robertson will share her research on Japan’s advanced robotics industry and the design of human-robot interfaces. Moderated by Michelle Millar Fisher, co-curator of Designs for Different Futures.

Ticket required. $10 (members $8); does not include museum admission.

Part of Untold Stories, a lecture series that asks questions about works of art we think we know.


Friday Remix

January 31, 2020 | 6:00–10:00 p.m. | Main Building

A unique late-night experience designed in collaboration with local creatives. Get ready for music, dancing, Detours, gallery interventions, art-making, performances, and more. Collaborators include The Sun Ra Arkestra, Mary Maggic, Annie Wilson, and Zornitsa Stoyanova.

Ticket required. $28 (members $22; Young Friends and Student members $14).


MLK Day: Dreams of Different Futures

January 20, 2020 | 10:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m. | Main Building

How do we engage community in the design of our city now and for the future? Inspired by the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., spend the day of service imagining possibilities for a future Philadelphia through community conversations, a teach-in, and an all-ages activity with Tiny WPA. Drop-ins welcome.

Teach-in: A Case for Action

How can we create change? Learn from community organizers, activists and designers what steps they take to positively impact the future.

Community Conversation: Return and Go Get It

How does the past shape our future? Employing the West African concept of Sankofa, where one looks to the past for guidance for the future, participants will discuss how Dr. King’s legacy continues to inspire dreams for the future.


Design Competition for Schools

On display March 8, 2020 | Futures Therapy Lab

Stop by and see student posters that answer the question, “What would you design that supports and empowers people to bridge a divide?”


Public Exhibition Tours

Tuesdays & Thursdays |1:00 p.m. | Dorrance Galleries
Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays | 11:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m. | Dorrance Galleries

The future is wild! Don’t go it alone. Drop in for a tour of Designs for Different Futures and cap off your visit in the Futures Therapy Lab.



Designs for Different Futures is organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Walker Art Center, and the Art Institute of Chicago.

In Philadelphia, this exhibition is generously supported by the Annenberg Foundation Fund for Major Exhibitions, the Robert Montgomery Scott Endowment for Exhibitions, the Kathleen C. and John J.F. Sherrerd Fund for Exhibitions, Lisa Roberts and David Seltzer in Honor of Collab's 50th Anniversary, the Women’s Committee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Laura and William C. Buck Endowment for Exhibitions, the Harriet and Ronald Lassin Fund for Special Exhibitions, the Jill and Sheldon Bonovitz Exhibition Fund, and an anonymous donor.

Credits as of August 29, 2019


Note: Images illustrate programs affiliated with the exhibition, though not all of them reflect works represented in the exhibition. Please contact the Press Office to verify.


Social Media @philamuseum


We are Philadelphia’s art museum. A world-renowned collection. A landmark building. A place that welcomes everyone. We bring the arts to life, inspiring visitors—through scholarly study and creative play—to discover the spirit of imagination that lies in everyone. We connect people with the arts in rich and varied ways, making the experience of the Museum surprising, lively, and always memorable. We are committed to inviting visitors to see the world—and themselves—anew through the beauty and expressive power of the arts.

For additional information, contact the Communications Department of the Philadelphia Museum of Art by phone at 215-684-7860, by fax at 215-235-0050, or by e-mail at pressroom@philamuseum.org. The Museum is located on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway at 26th Street. For general information, call 215-763-8100.