The time has finally come-this Saturday, September 26th, the Museum of Arts and Design will be opening its doors to its brand new light-filled, ceramic-encased building on Columbus Circle in New York City, offering the public the chance to see and experience more than they were ever able to before in the museum's three different locations on West 53rd Street, where it had been located since its inception as the Museum of Contemporary Crafts (and later renamed the American Craft Museum) 52 years ago.
At the recent American Craft Show in San Francisco the American Craft Council presented its Awards of Excellence to a select few artists. Chosen from among 250 exhibitors by guest jurors Ted Cohen, an exhibition designer, Mike Holmes, co-owner of Velvet da Vinci Gallery in San Francisco and Julie M. Muniz, the Imogene Gieling Curator of Decorative Arts at the Oakland Museum of California, the recipients are representative of the vibrant American craft scene.
Susan Meller, a veteran textile collector, has assembled and published an eye-dazzling array of Russian-manufactured fabrics made for the bazaars of Central Asia. Andrea DiNoto queries her on the allure of these colorful cloths and garments and on her tech-savvy approach to locating choice examples.
In 2004 Hisano Takei was pursuing an M.F.A. in metals and jewelry at the State University of New York at New Paltz when she was assigned her first graduate school project-to make 10 related objects in 10 days. Takei panicked. She knew it was impossible to complete 10 pieces of jewelry out of metal in that time frame. So she turned to wool, and 10 days later she completed the project.
After four days of frenzied crowds at the Eleventh Annual Sculpture Objects & Functional Art Fair (SOFA) at the Park Avenue Armory in New York-opening night alone drew over 2,600 people-visiting the exhibition on Sunday, June 1, the final day, was an unexpectedly calming experience. No longer were there throngs pushing past each other rushing to stake claims on one must-have piece or another.