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Displaying items by tag: craftsmanship

In the mid-1500s, European merchant ships, loaded with treasures from Asia, began arriving in the port city of Acapulco. The cargo of Japanese lacquerware, Chinese porcelains and ivory carvings from India and the Philippines was bound for Europe. But along the way, many of the objects found their way to markets in Mexico City. Similar stories played out in port cities from Rio de Janeiro to Boston, transforming the Americas into a nexus of global trade and leaving an indelible impact on local art.

To explore the influence of Asian craftsmanship on the art of the early Americas, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston is hosting “Made in the Americas: The New World Discovers Asia.”

Published in News
Tuesday, 09 June 2015 13:28

A Way of Life: Adventures in Collecting

Long before this quiet New Jersey couple met, little did they know that together they were destined to form one of the greatest collections of folk art in America. As a teenager, the wife saved her babysitting money to purchase her first piece—a small side table, at which her mother just shook her head. The husband grew up on a ranch in Nevada where he learned the skills to become a superb woodworker, gaining an understanding for the craftsmanship involved in antiques.

Their prairie-style home is set on a secluded hilltop and houses just a portion of their...

Published in News
Monday, 17 November 2014 11:43

Cartier Exhibit Opens at the Denver Art Museum

The Denver Art Museum's "Brilliant: Cartier in the 20th Century" is a boon for local museum goers who are getting a rare chance to see a sparkling array of jewelry, unsurpassed in craftsmanship and historical significance, and undoubtedly worth tens of millions of dollars.

But, make no mistake, there's a bonus in it for Cartier, too, which stars in the kind of commercial money can't buy. The exhibit focuses on Cartier's success in years past, but the company is still very much in business and happy to sell today's wealthy clients the same sort of shimmering necklaces, rings and watches lit to perfection in DAM's glass boxes.

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Some 60 jeweled objects from the private collection formed by Sheikh Hamad bin Abdullah Al-Thani will be presented at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in the exhibition "Treasures from India: Jewels from the Al-Thani Collection."  The presentation will provide a glimpse into the evolving styles of the jeweled arts in India from the Mughal period until the early 20th century, with emphasis on later exchanges with the West. The exhibition will be shown within the Metropolitan Museum’s Islamic art galleries, adjacent to the Museum’s own collection of Mughal-period art. 
“It is with great delight that we present to the public this selection of works representing several centuries of tradition and craftsmanship in the jeweled arts—from India’s Mughal workshops to the ateliers of Paris,” Thomas P. Campbell , Director and CEO of the Metropolitan Museum, said when announcing the exhibition.

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The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) in New York is celebrating the legacy of its founder Aileen Osborn Webb with the exhibition “What Would Mrs. Webb Do? A Founder’s Vision.” Featuring a variety of objects created over the past sixty years, the show highlights Webb’s advocacy of American craft and explores how she championed the skilled maker as integral to America’s future.

A patron and philanthropist, Webb pioneered an understanding of craftsmanship and the handmade as a creative driving force behind art and design. In addition to founding MAD (originally the Museum of Contemporary Crafts) in 1956, Webb helped launch a number of crafts-related institutions, including the American Craft Council, the School of American Craftsmen, and the World Crafts Council.

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The V&A has announced details for the only major retrospective in Europe of the work of the visionary fashion designer Lee Alexander McQueen. One of the most innovative designers of his generation, McQueen was celebrated for his extraordinary creative talent. He combined a profound grasp of tailoring and eclectic range of influences with a relentless pursuit to challenge the boundaries of art and fashion, blending the latest technology with traditional craftsmanship.

Originated by the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, "Savage Beauty" will be edited and expanded for the V&A’s large exhibition galleries. It will feature 30 additional garments, including some rare early pieces, lent by private individuals and collectors such as Katy England and Annabelle Neilson as well as pieces from the Isabella Blow Collection and the House of Givenchy.

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Following Sotheby’s two previous selling exhibitions of Western fine and decorative arts held in 2012 and 2013, the renowned international auction house will mount its third annual “Age of Elegance: European Paintings, Furniture and Sculpture” sale in Beijing on September 7 and 8.

Hosted in the Grand Ballroom of the Kerry Hotel, “Age of Elegance” contains an exquisitely curated selection of 65 items that embody the stellar craftsmanship and extravagantly ornamental tastes of European decorative arts from the rococo period up until the 20th century.

At the very highest end of the scale is Francois Linke’s extraordinary Grand Bureau (US$6 million), a gilt bronze writing desk and chair first shown at the Paris World Expo in 1900 that represents the summit of belle époque splendor.

Published in News
Tuesday, 01 July 2014 17:18

“MAD Biennial” Celebrates NYC Makers

New York’s Museum of Arts and Design (formerly the American Craft Museum) is currently hosting its inaugural “NYC Makers: The MAD Biennial,” an exhibition that highlights the city’s vast and varied creative communities. The first show to be organized under the leadership of the museum’s new Director Glenn Adamson, “NYC Makers” spotlights the work of 100 artisans, artists, and designers, living and working in New York City. The roster runs the gamut from famous creative figures such as performance artist Laurie Anderson and multimedia artist/singer-songwriter Yoko Ono to furniture designers, fashion designers, and architects.

The goal of the exhibition is to further the museum’s ongoing commitment to craftsmanship across all creative fields, promoting not only makers who exhibit their work in a museum setting, but also those who operate behind the scenes or on a more practical level. Makers featured in the exhibition were nominated by a pool of over 300 New York City-based cultural leaders, including curators, choreographers, academics, and journalists. Finalists were hand-picked by a jury led by Adamson and exhibition curator Jake Yuzna, the museum’s Director of Public Programs, based on their mastery of their respective craft.

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Marc-Olivier Wahler has been chosen as the first guest curator for the annual Audemars Piguet Art Commission. Wahler has been invited by the brand to work with the first artist selected for the commission on the production of a major new artwork to be unveiled at Art Basel in Basel 2015. As the founder and director of the Chalet Society in Paris, and the former director of the Palais de Tokyo, Wahler brings the experience of organising over 400 exhibitions during the last 20 years to Audemars Piguet’s new arts commissioning project.
Drawing on inspiration from the craftsmanship and technical excellence inherent to Audemars Piguet's legacy of watchmaking, the Audemars Piguet Art Commission will support artists in the creation of new works which explore relationships between contemporary creative practice and complex mechanics, technology, and science.

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The Brooklyn Museum, which holds a celebrated decorative arts collection, is currently presenting a selection of rarely seen American and European quilts. In fact, only one of the 30-plus quilts on display has been on public view in the past 30 years.

The exhibition titled Workt by Hand: Hidden Labor and Historical Quilts aims to explore the impact of feminist scholarship on the ways in which historical quilts have been and are currently viewed, contextualized, and interpreted. The exhibition goes beyond the connection of quilting to feminism and explores the medium of quilting as an art form and as an aspect of material culture with meaningful social and political undertones.

The quilts on view at the Brooklyn Museum span two centuries and feature iconic designs and techniques including the log cabin style, the Amish sunshine and shadow style, and crazy quilts, which were fashionable during the late 19th century. A quilt by Mary A. Stinson that is considered one of finest examples of a crazy quilt is included in Workt by Hand.

Workt by Hand aims to shed light on the skill, craftsmanship, thought, and energy that went into quilting; something that was frequently overlooked in a male-dominated society. The exhibition, which is on view through September 15, 2013, includes photographs, newspaper clippings, sample pieces of quilts, and other ephemera relating to the history of quilts.

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