Matylda Krzykowski works with space: objects within space and ideas outside of space. Her work has pulled peripheral threads into the centre, and has cast new light on ideas at the centre of the discourses she nourishes. Although these discourses cannot be reduced to conventional spheres of operation, they could broadly be identified as curation, design, architecture, art and performance. Krzykowski seeks to instigate conversations, works to maintain their energy, and thereby affects results. These results are almost always entirely born from intense and generous collaboration. Her work has resonated globally. Krzykowski is organically interdisciplinary. (It’s a way of doing, rather than a way of thinking.)
The tools she deploys include, but are not limited to: speech, instant messaging, archiving [see: Online Depot], art direction, theatre and performance [see: Design Date], scenography and choreography [see: Total Space], reportage [see: Things Might] and digital space treated as physical space [see: Desktop Exhibition]. The communication vehicles she employs include the exhibition, the intervention, the editorial, the public talk, and Instagram, to name a few. Krzykowski travels widely to develop formats, participate in juries, to give lectures, develop exhibitions, and to conceive and deliver workshops in the cultural field. Wherever she may be, she sees the visible and reformats the unseen.
Written by James Tyler Foster, 2020
Tower (Office & Workshop)
Am Wasserwerk 22 f
+49 176 712 111 60
In 2007, during her studies, Matylda Krzykowski started the independent blog Matandme.com, where she portrayed the work and life of contemporary practitioners. In 2011 Krzykowski co-founded Depot Basel place for contemporary design, Switzerland, which she co- and art directed until its closure in 2018.
In 2014/2015 she was a former participant of the Jan van Eyck Academy where she conducted research around formats of display. 2018/2019 Matylda Krzykowski was visiting professor in the Industrial / Interface Design department of the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design. Her seminars rank from Methods & Formats to Multiversum and Parallax. 2018/2019 she joined the faculty of The School of Arts Institute Chicago in the Department of Architecture, Interior Architecture and Designed Objects. Appointed the Mitchell Visiting Professor she contributes with her project-based learning strategies and her studio seminar Objects and Spaces for Angels and Machines to an interdisciplinary community of artists and designers. Since 2017 Krzykowski runs the annual course Show Your Work at MA Design, Research and Entrepreneurship, at the University of the Arts Bern (CH). In 2018 Krzykowski co-founded Foreign Legion, a globally active curatorial and spatial practice for systemic change. Since 2020 Krzykowski writes Things Might, a column about the designed environment for Arts of the Working Class Magazine and since 2021 she is advisor at Jan van Eyck Academy (NL).
Matylda Krzykowski is the artistic lead of CIVIC, newly established social infrastructure and digital & physical exhibition and discourse space at Academy of Art and Design in Basel (CH), tutor at The Critical Inquiry Lab at Design Academy Eindhoven (NL) and co-curator of the exhibition Institution Building at CIVA Brussels (BE).
In September 2021 Airtime, a ‘TV Show’ on (Swiss) Design scripted and hosted by Matylda Krzykowski, was launched on wantedesign.online and exhibited at Swiss Design Awards 2021, Halle 3, Basel (CH). On 6 October 2021 Workspace in Progress, curated by Matylda Krzykowski and developed with Stefan Diez, Wagner Living and Die Angewandte, opened at Makk Cologne (DE).
Matylda Krzykowski currently develops The Energy Show, an exhibition about designing with, for and under the sun, and how it relates to human energy, for Het Nieuwe Institute (NL), in context of the first Solar Biennale opening September 2022.
‘It’s almost impossible to capture the essence of Matylda Krzykowski in just a few phrases, or even a complete description of her job title for that matter.’
Source: Interview for Elle Decor by Bianca Felicori
‘Berlin-based impresario Matylda Krzykowski is reinventing the very foundations of design and architecture and its curation. Her transdisciplinary, geographically mobile practice includes installations, choreography, TV game shows, theater and many other experimental formats, always undertaken with an eye towards progressive principles.’
Source: Design in Dialogue by Glenn Adamson
‘We’re joined by this belief that design shapes the way we live, that it’s the reason we walk through doors and corridors with purpose.’
Source: Interview for Interview Magazine by Grace Banks
‘Who do you look up to?’ – ‘Mary Poppins. She appears when she is needed; she surprises and moves on once she’s done.’
Source: Interview for We are the Future by Ashley Hefnawy
‘If you would found an organisation dealing with design today what would you do differently? – I would propose a union of disciplines, herald the end of ‘design’, stress the importance of the irrational and call for an approach and attitude, which would synthesise topics like ‘home, family, money, health, work, youth etc.’.
Source: Interview No Space Is A Good Place by Nadine Botha
‘Many of the most influential design curators are female: notably Paola Antonelli at the Museum of Modern Art and Beatrice Galillee at the Metropolitan Museum in New York, Zoë Ryan of the Art institute in Chicago; Catherine Ince at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London; Matylda Krzykowski in Berlin; and Cecilia León de la Barra in Mexico City.’
Source: Book Design as an Attitude by Alice Rawsthorn
Clients & Partners
Archiv der Avantgarden, Design Museum London, Jan Van Eyck Academy, Holon Design Museum, Kunstgewerbemuseum Dresden, London Design Festival, Civa Brussels, Marres Maastricht, Vitra Design Museum, Het Nieuwe Instituut, Makk Cologne, Van Abbemuseum Eindhoven, Victoria & Albert Museum, Z33 Hasselt
AA Architectural Association, Arizona State University, Bezalel Academy of Art & Design Jersusalem, Brno Design Biennale, Cranbrook Academy of Art, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Design Academy Eindhoven, Die Angewandte Wien, Domus Academy Milan, FHNW Basel, Graphic Design Arnhem, HKB Bern, Institut Kunst Basel, Kingston University London, Maastricht Academy of Fine Arts & Design, Muthesius University Kiel, School of Visual Arts New York, Parallel School Lausanne, Pratt Institute, The School of Art Institute Chicago, University of Illinois Chicago, The University of New South Wales Faculty of Art and Design Sydney, Virginia Commonwealth University
Adidas, Apartamento Magazine, Base Milano, Bonjour Baby, Chamber Gallery, C-Mine Designcentrum, Current Obsession, Design Indaba, Design Platform Limburg, Diez Office, Fashionclash, Female Design Council, Frame Magazine, Futu Magazine, Gallery Bolte Lang, Gothe Institut Chicago, Istanbul Design Biennale, Jerusalem Design Week, Kompetenzzentrum der Kultur- und Kreativwirtschaft des Bundes, Lodz Design Festival, Migros Engagement, Muto Heimatgastronomie, Pecha Kucha, PIN-UP, Stimulieringsfonds, Salone del Mobile, Soho House Berlin, Soho House Istanbul, Sozial Muscle Club Basel, TL Magazine, UBS Art Forum, Uncube, Vienna Design Week, Vitra, Wagner Living
Jurys & Nominations
Dutch Design Award (2011 – 2016), Interieur Awards / Kortrijk Biennale (2014), Outstanding Artist Award (2016), Limburg Design Icons (2016), Beazley Designs of the Year (Since 2018), Villa Noailles Design Competition (2018), Frame Awards (2019), Design Prize Milan (2019)
Nomination ‘Animator’ Designalive Awards (2012), Cultural Advancement Award Stadt Basel / Depot Basel (2013), Nomination Core 77 Food Award / Sagel & Krzykowski (2013), Wallpaper Magazine Award – Best Finished Object (2013), Swiss Federal Design Award for ‘Design Mediation’ / Depot Basel (2013), Alexander Clavel Kulturpreis / Depot Basel (2015), Swiss Federal Design Award for ‘Design Mediation’ / Online Depot (2017)
Landing page portrait by Katrin Greiling