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up to and including 09 October 2011

Futuro - Constructing Utopia

In the spring of 2011 a futuristic holiday home came to land in Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen: Futuro (1968). Following a thorough restoration the original prototype by the Finnish architect Matti Suuronen had been acquired by the museum and was on display for the first time. You could board this UFO-like house and travel back in time to the 1960s.

The Futuro house was being given pride of place in the museum’s large Bodon gallery as the centrepiece of a display of twenty prints and approximately a hundred design and applied art objects from the collection, such as a wearable radio in the form of a bangle and a futuristic recumbent bicycle. All these objects were linked by a common search for the perfect form: a quest that has played an important role in the history of art and design.

Watch here a video about Futuro.


In 1965 Matti Suuronen was asked to design a mobile holiday home that could be erected in poorly accessible skiing areas. De Futuro was revolutionary for its time: fully demountable, made from lightweight polyester and suitable for serial production. Although production of the mobile home was halted prematurely, in part due to the oil crisis of 1973, there are dozens of Futuros spread across the world. Most are in private collections, but the original prototype could be seen at Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. The prefabricated interior comprises a living room, two bedrooms, a kitchen and bathroom.

The perfect form

In the design of Futuro, Suuronen was looking for perfection within a minimal form. The form had to be efficient in design and production, but must also have a natural beauty. He found these qualities in the ellipsoid: a three-dimensional ellipse based on the proportions of the golden section. You will also recognise this search for the prefect form in the other objects on display. In addition to the ellipsoid you will discover other mathematical principles such as the Fibonacci sequence and the Archimedean spiral. You could be amazed at extraordinary objects from the collections’ entire time span and see prints by Albrecht Dürer, a design chair by Charles and Ray Eames and Czech glasswork.

The Collection Enriched

From April Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen is showing The Collection Enriched. Over the next two years these new displays of the permanent collection showcase the museum's masterpieces of European painting together with several loans from other museums. The acquisition of the Futuro represents another enrichment of the collection.

BankGiro Loterij

The acquisition and restoration of the Futuro prototype has been made possible by the BankGiro Loterij. The BankGiro Loterij is once more supporting Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen over the next five years as a regular beneficiary.