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from the curators « MAD Blog
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from the curators

Posts Tagged ‘from the curators’

Is Seeing Believing?

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Before the opening of the exhibition, while working on the catalogue and press, our main challenge was to convey how small these works really are. The scale of the works in real life is nearly unbelievable. Well, NEARLY.

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Countdown to the opening of The Global Africa Project (GAP)

Bright Eke working in Open Studios at MAD, November 11, 2010

It’s Veteran’s Day and the installation of GAP is in full swing. The works of art have been arriving and as they are unpacked and put into place under the watchful eye of Dorothy Globus, our curator of exhibitions, Elayne Rush, Associate Registrar, Matthew Cox, chief preparator and Eric Lindviet, who coordinates the construction, the exhibition starts to reveal itself. This seems to be a good point to record some random curatorial thoughts

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September, the January of the Art World

Photo: Courtesy of Amaridian Gallery

Vogue editor Candy Price famously said that September was the "January" of the fashion world but it's true for every aspect of art previews right now. Want to see a sampling of just a few of the artists who will be included in GAP? In a few major cities you will find a handful of artists and artisans who will also be a part of The Global Africa Project opening this fall.

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Update on The Global Africa Project exhibition

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There’s lots going on this spring and summer at MAD with Dead or Alive opening officially on April 27th, Bespoke on May 13th and Abraaj 2010, scheduled for August 31st. In the midst of all this preparations for The Global Africa Project—to open on November 16, 2010—are progressing with great intensity.

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What was the Studio Craft Movement, anyway?

Anni Albers, Sheep May Safely Graze, 1959. Collection of the Museum of Arts and Design

A recent comment on the “Making It Real” blog was “What is the Making it Real exhibition about and when will it take place?” The short answer is: Making it Real will be at MAD from October 12, 2011, until January 15, 2012, and will look at the emergence of the American Studio Craft Movement in the period after World War II. But that begs the question—what was the studio craft movement? So today’s blog is a (short, I promise) history lesson about how and why crafts went from being a necessity to being a choice. Along the way, I will also explain how we came up with the title.

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Making It Real with Robert

Philip Lloyd Powell, Hanging Cabinet and Sideboard, ca. 1960

As you may have heard, Robert, MAD’s fabulous new restaurant with its spectacular view of Columbus Circle, has finally opened. You may not know that the restaurant is named after Robert Isabell, the famed events planner involved in the project who died unexpectedly in 2009. In reading articles about his death in the New York Times , and later information about the auction of his property at Sotheby’s, we realized another link we had with Robert—he loved many of the artists that we are including in Making It Real.

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The YA/YA group designs sets for production of “Peter and the Wolf” at the Guggenheim

“Wolf” by Rontherin Ratliff

Have you heard of the YA/YAs of New Orleans? No, I don’t mean the “Divine Sisterhood” of movie fame, but the organization (Young Aspirations/ Young Artists) whose mission is to “empower creative young people to become successful adults.” Founded over twenty years ago by Jana Napoli this organization works to give the youth of New Orleans “educational experiences in arts” and encourage “entrepreneurship…by fostering and supporting their ambitions.”

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Heath Ceramics

Heath Casseroles from the 1950s [from American Craft Magazine]

When we visited San Francisco to do research for this exhibition, a visit to the Heath Ceramics factory in Sausalito was a must. Heath Ceramics was represented with a stoneware saucepot in Craftsmanship in a Changing World, the Museum of Art and Design's inaugural show (at the time it was called the Museum of Contemporary Crafts).

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Craft in the Service of Worship

Ibram Lassaw, Eternal Light, 1956; Copper sheet covered with bronze and chromium bronze; The Jewish Museum, New York

The church (and by “church” I mean all religious groups) has historically been an important patron of the arts, and we found that this was especially true in the postwar period when many new churches and synagogues were built. So, we are including a section in Making it Real of “Craft in the Service of Worship.”

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Like a child at play: Toying with Barbie & Ethnic Motifs

Byron Lars Ayako Jones™ Barbie® doll

This is not your little cousin Muffie's Barbie - not at all. With his limited-edition figurines for Mattel, Fashion Designer Byron Lars plays around with the legendary plastic style icon, keeping all the prerequisite Barbie musts intact - pointy 'Barbie' toes, beyond-perfect makeup, posture, and figure - whilst deftly playing around with her overall style dna.

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