Museum of Arts & Design (MAD)
Jerome and Simona Chazen Building
2 Columbus Circle
New York City, NY 10019
Open: Sunday 10:00am-6:00pm/Monday Closed/Tuesday-Saturday 10:00am-6:00pm
Fee: General $16.00/Seniors $14.00/Students $12.00/ Members Free
My review on TripAdvisor:
I recently visited the Museum of Arts & Design for the “Too Fast to Live, Too Young to Die: Punk Graphics 1976-1986” exhibition on the rise of Punk and New Wave music that came onto to the radar during the end of the Vietnam War to the Second Reagan Administration. I remember how the music was changing from folk and funk to the beginnings of ‘Underground’ music and then the rise of the Disco era.
The posters of ‘Punk Graphics’
The exhibition displayed all the posters and flyers from the clubs like the Mudd Club, CBGB’s, Max’s Kansas City and Danceteria when they were in their heyday. Groups that were included in the exhibition were such known names as DEVO, The Talking Heads, Blondie, Richard Hell and The B52’s. This was at a time of collages and photocopying so the posters and flyers could be rudimentary but made their point. It got people into the door.
It was also a time that graffiti artists could show their work off and integrated themselves into the music scene. So it is a nice combination of music, video and pictures. Take time out to listen to the songs and really look at the pictures at the music leaders at the time. It really does capture a moment in history.
I also got to see the Roger Brown exhibition of paintings and ceramic work which bought to light the artists paintings along with items that he found over the years to match with his work. It was different.
The latest exhibition running through the holidays and into the new year of 2020 is the Anna Sui, the American designer, exhibition with a retrospect of her work over the last twenty years.
Designer Anna Sui at the opening of the exhibition of her work
Ms. Sui’s works can be labelled as Grunge, Surfer, Street Wise and Classic. The exhibition covers her clothing line, jewelry and accessories and extensive cosmetic line. When I was taking the walking tour of the exhibition, the docent said that she was involved in every aspects of her business as well as the runway shows. It was a unique display of her work over her career.
History of the Museum of Arts & Design:
The museum first opened its doors in 1956 as the Museum of Contemporary Crafts whose original mission of recognizing the craftsmanship of contemporary artists. Nurtured by the vision of philanthropist and craft patron, Aileen Osborn Webb, the museum mounted exhibitions that focused on the materials and techniques associated with craft disciplines. From the earliest years, the Museum celebrated the changing roles of craftsmanship in society, served as an important advocate for emerging artists and linked art to industry (Wiki).
From 1963 to 1987, under the directorship of Paul J. Smith, the Museum presented dynamic and often participatory exhibitions that reflected the social currents of the era and broke down hierarchies in the arts with the celebration of popular culture and mundane materials. In 1979, the Museum reopened as the American Craft Museum in an expanded location at 44 West 53rd Street. To accommodate its ever-growing programming, the Museum relocated again in 1986 to its 18,000 square foot home at 40 West 53rd Street, where it remained until 2008 (Wiki).
The next ten years were a period of rapid growth and change as the American Craft Council was restructured and the Museum and the Council were established as independent organizations. Holly Hotchner was appointed as director of the Museum in 1996 and served as director for 16 years until 2013. Hotchner initiated a comprehensive strategic planning process that expanded the Board of Trustees, curatorial staff and exhibition and educational program. This process led to the Museum’s name change in 2002 to the Museum of Arts & Design to reflect the institution’s increasingly interdisciplinary collections and programming. The continued growth of MAD’s collections, public programs and attendance resulted in its successful 2002 bid to the New York Economic Development Corporation to acquire the building at 2 Columbus Circle (Wiki).
The Museum opened in its new home at 2 Columbus Circle to great controversy. The purposed changes to the building originally designed by Edward Durrell Stone sparked a preservation debate by many artists. The new building was designed by Brad Cloepfil of Allied Works Architecture in September 2008. With its facade of glazed terra-cotta tile and fritted glass, the Jerome and Simona Chazen Building reflects MAD’s craft heritage and permanent collection and animates Columbus Circle (Wiki).
The new Brad Cloepfil Building