The exhibition’s curators, Jeroen Beekmans and Joop de Boer, decided to bypass utopian scenarios for existing trends and innovations, envisioning how these might affect the lives of city dwellers in the future. Their biggest challenge: Making these urban themes and ideas accessible to a non-specialist audience. According to them, the result – and process – turned out to be a lot of fun! Their exhibition has the look-and-feel of an urban construction site. One part of the exhibition, devoted to inspiration, tells the story of living in a future city with new urban lifestyles, technological innovations, alternative economic models, and groundbreaking ideas for food production. The second part, focused on activation, invites visitors to contribute to a real-life ‘Sim City,’ a fab lab-style area with a huge, growing miniature city.

As Pop-up City thinks that the city of the future will revolve around humans, not master plans, the curators based their exhibition on a series of workshops that were open to professionals, students, or just people who are passionate about cities. Each workshop dealt with a predefined theme touching on issues like urban play, mobility, the peer-to-peer economy, green cities, Justice to Go, and pop-up living. The two curators used these workshops to test whether they had addressed the right issues and to make sure that they didn’t leave out anything important.

The Future City exhibition
Location: Museon, Stadhouderslaan 37, 2517 HV Den Haag, The Netherlands
Duration: 21 June – 27 October 2013
Opening hours: Tuesday – Sunday, 11 am – 5 pm
Future City at Museon

Text by Cristina Ampatzidou
All photos, incl. the header image, by CONCERN/ Gilian Schrofer