Original emoji acquired by MoMA

Original emoji set designed by Shigetaka Kurita and acquired by MoMA

The Museum of Modern Art has added the original set of 176 emoji to their permanent collection, the New York Times reports. Designed by Shigetaka Kurita for Japanese mobile provider NTT DoCoMo, the glyphs were first released in 1999 and used on pagers. Over a decade later, Apple produced their own emoji set for the iPhone in 2011. The emoji will join MoMA’s expanding collection of ‘digital objects’ including the @ symbol and a number of video games. Senior curator for architecture and design Paola Antonelli has said, ‘what we’ve really acquired is a new communication platform… But at the same time, the emoji themselves are ideographs, one of the most ancient ways to communicate. I love how the centuries are connected in that way.’

28 October 2016