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Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum Launch Renovated Carnegie Mansion and New Visitor Experience Today

Caroline Baumann, director of Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum (formerly Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum), today announcedplans for the opening of the renovated and restored Carnegie Mansion and the 10 exhibitions that will inaugurate the revamped and expanded gallery spaces.

The nation's only museum devoted exclusively to historic and contemporary design, Cooper Hewitt will open its doors to the public today, Dec. 12. The museum will boast 60 percent more gallery space to present its important collection and temporary exhibitions and will offer an entirely new and invigorated visitor experience, with interactive, immersive creative technologies. In addition to Cooper Hewitt's physical transformation, the museum now has a new name, website, graphic identity and custom typeface.

Cooper Hewitt's renovation provides the opportunity to redefine today's museum experience and inspire each visitor to play designer before, during and after their visit. All visitors will be encouraged to use an interactive "pen" to collect and create, becoming designers in their own right. With the pen, they also will be able to digitally collect design objects on view and additional objects from the permanent collection via ultra-high-definition interactive tables.

"Cooper Hewitt's fall opening marks a new chapter for the Smithsonian in New York City," said Wayne Clough, Secretary of the Smithsonian. "The museum continues to serve the public on a local and global level through innovative education and outreach programs and expanded online collections access."

The largest initiative in Cooper Hewitt's history, the renovation and expansion of the Carnegie Mansion, garden and adjacent townhouses on New York's Museum Mile have been achieved through a successful $91 million capital and endowment campaign. The museum has worked with an esteemed team of architects and designers to create the new Cooper Hewitt: Gluckman Mayner Architects, Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Thinc Design, Goppion, Local Projects, Ideum, Walter Hood, Pentagram, Chester Jenkins, GE, SistelNetworks and Undercurrent.

"We have created a 21st-century museum that will bring our collections to life and make design even more relevant and exciting to today's audiences, while continuing to respect the history of this museum and the integrity of the much-treasured Carnegie Mansion," said Baumann.

About Cooper Hewitt
Founded in 1897, Cooper Hewitt is the only museum in the nation devoted exclusively to historic and contemporary design. The museum educates, inspires and empowers people through design, presenting compelling educational programs, exhibitions and publications. Visit the museum's new website at

SOURCE Cooper Hewitt

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