Last Sunday Muv & I visited MAD, the Museum of Art & Design. It’s received surprisingly little fanfare considering it’s a major new museum in the middle of Manhattan. It opened last September bang on Columbus Circle (that’s just by the bottom left corner of Central Park in Midtown) in a neat, self-contained, ex gallery building, with a shiny new external & internal makeover. (Swarovski (is there anything they don’t sponsor?) have placed a whopping great chandelier in the entrance and Tord Boontje’s ravishing Blossom chandelier hangs in the gift shop.) The museum itself is small, but that means it doesn’t overwhelm. A restaurant will open later this year on the top floor.
The emphasis is on craft, rather than industrial design as at London’s excellent Design Museum or Munich’s Pinakothek der Moderne, so if you go expecting Dyson vacuum cleaners and Ty Nant bottles in the permanent collection you will be doomed to disappointment. If however you love pottery by Bernard Leach and Lucy Rie, admire modern glasswork techniques or have a thing for the evolution of jewelry in the 20th century, then this is the place for you.
From top:
Harumi Nakashima, (born 1950) JapanStruggling Form ( From the Ecstatic Series) 2004. Stoneware
Derek Bencomo (born 1962) United States Gift From the Rainforest, 1999 Kamani Wood
Meryll Saylan (born 1936) United States Tribute to Hans Coper, 2001 Wood, paint, dye

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I just watched a documentary featuring Harumi Nakashima. She is such a character.

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