Peer reviewed article forthcoming fall 2018 in the academic Journal of Visual Culture. Guns are usually designed with great attention to their aesthetic, ergonomic, and functional component parts. Yet, their contemporary manifestations are considered so culturally and symbolically fraught—especially in the United States—that guns produced in the last century have rarely been presented as industrial objects worthy of sustained and close reflection within the context of a major design exhibition or art museum collection. This paper considers the few recent exceptions, the legacy that curators and design historians have inherited and recently mobilized around guns in the design canon, and the future of public conversations in the art museum around contemporary intersections of design and violence.