When I was commissioned to design the MoMA Calendar for the year 1987, the Museum told me that the problem with yearly calendars is that x% are sold before the new year, some more are sold in January — at a discount – and the rest are thrown away. That economic reality reminded me of the calendar in my grandmother’s kitchen and I replied, “OK I’ll design. a calendar that will never be obsolete”.

Grandmother’s calendar comprised 3 sets of cards (dates, days, months) fitting into 3 metal-frame ‘pockets’ which allowed the owner to make-the-date by him/herself; there was no indication of the year and no image. The marriage of this concept with design of 6 pvc cut-out sheets in 12 colors on a black background, gave birth to the MoMA perpetual calendar which invites you to create over 40,000 images — A New image each day for over 100 years.

The calendar was first marketed by MoMA in 1987 and remained on sale until the edition ran out a few years later.
I have received letters from many people who enjoyed the multiplicity of images they created, and wished to purchase more calendars as gifts for their family and friends. A second edition followed two decades later.

Six Perpetual Calendar sheets in a dozen colors may be “customized” to produce 40,600 different variations

Perpetual Calendar, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1987

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