The Smithsonian is probably one of the better reasons – apart from attending the inauguration of the first black president in American history – to go to Washington. But last weekend the Smithsonian was live in NYC with open days at all their affiliated museums. With the opportunity to visit the Society of Illustrators ( including comic and cartoon art ), the Noble Maritime Collection on Staten Island, or to swing by the Ukrainian Museum with the largest collection of hand painted eggs in the world, Sean and I decided instead to go MAD.
The Museum of Art and Design sits on Columbus Circle and is a center for the contemporary handmade crafts of American artists. More than just an exhibition space, MAD ‘celebrates the creative process’ by exploring the transformation of materials into art and design. And contemporary is the pivotal description here. There are working studios for artists, exhibitions, films and forums – and currently there is a choreographed performance called ‘Some Cleaning’ wherein the interior of the current exhibition is actually cleaned. So there is much to challenge and inspire.
The craft of Joyce J Scott in her about-to-open exhibition of Maryland to Murano is an absolute gem. She uses beading on a very sophisticated level to communicate thoughts about the interrelationship of family, race and politics. The work is exquisite in detail and in the words of the curator, challenges the perceived differences between art and craft, between politics and adornment. On another level, the MAD Biennial, representing dozens of New York artists and the many mediums they work in, was more of a 2014 time capsule of ideas, from illustration to illusionary shoes and a little refreshment on the side. The whole place was a MAD experience, but I still plan to go to Washington…
Wonderous! we should plan to visit Tasmania’s MONA Museum of old and new art, you would love it!
Yes please! There was a fantastic article about MONA in The New Yorker not so long ago and it has been on my list ever since….
Thoroughly enjoy your fitzy reports, haven’t commented for a while, but this showing was magnificent. Look forward to next one, Keep up the excellent work, love from patricia in Adelaide.
Thank you Patricia and great to hear from you. The beaded artworks in this exhibition were really exquisite – much more intricate than I could show in a photograph – so I’m glad you enjoyed them.
Please note new email address.
Hello and sorry for the late reply. I registered your new email address so you should be receiving news of blog stories as they are posted…
Thanks for reading!