An Interview with David Van Der Leer, Curator of the BMW Guggenheim Lab in Mumbai

Cedar Pasori
Dec 12, 2012 12:03AM

I recently interviewed curator of the BMW Guggenheim Lab, David Van Der Leer, about his latest project in Mumbai. Mumbai is one of the most dense cities in the world, and it's growing and changing rapidly. According to David, "It's a good place to be if you want to imagine what cities are going to be like in the future." 

While we discussed the project in Mumbai specifically, I found it interesting that he previously studied urban photography. When I asked him about this after the interview questions, he expressed frustration with the genre, out of its presumption that we understand cities, when in fact, as he says, "we don't understand cities at all." 

One of my favorite parts of the interview is when he discusses the idea of privacy. He says, "We're constantly doing research in terms of what privacy is in the city. What does privacy still mean, and where do you find it? Where do you go in the city, and what are the design implications for that?"

The lab in Mumbai will be open from December 9, 2012 through January 20, 2013, and they are aiming to make it their most practical, successful project yet.

Read the interview here.

Cedar Pasori