The Materials Collection is a collection of over 600 materials ranging from innovative, new materials to those found everyday in the constructed environment. The physical collection, organized into five material families—Biocomposite, Polymer, Metal, Mineral, and Ceramic—allows for tactile browsing, while the database (HarvardKey required) provides multiple points of access to meet research needs. By foregrounding material composition and functional traits, the collection allows users to rethink conventional applications and promote material experimentation in design practice. Explorations in material research find expression through publications, exhibitions, colloquia, and course offerings that examine the research interests of the GSD.

Search for materials at the GSD (HarvardKey required)
Learn more about materials at Harvard and beyond
Read the GSD Materials Collection Primer (pdf)


Frances Loeb Library
Lower Level, Special Collections


Johanna Kasubowski
(617) 384-7499