Top 10 Craft Exhibitions to See in 2019

Top 10 Craft Exhibitions to See in 2019

Published on Saturday, December 22, 2018.
Pearl Dick, Transparency

Pearl DickTransparency, 2017, blown and sculpted glass, 12.5 x 16 x 6 in. Part of "Transparency: An LGBTQ+ Glass Art Exhibition," opening at Museum of Glass in October 2019.

Randy Korwin

The end of the year is a time for remembering but also for looking forward. Here's the American Craft Council's list of exhibitions – from retrospectives on icons to examinations of materials and societal trends – not to miss in 2019. Keep your calendar full of craft!

"Simone Leigh"
April 19 – August 4, 2019
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
New York, New York
Every other year, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum awards the Hugo Boss Prize for "significant achievement in contemporary art." It is hard to think of a more deserving recipient than Simone Leigh, whose clay sculptures channel traditional forms while addressing the pressing issues of today.

"Crystal: Visible and Invisible"
October 12, 2019 – January 6, 2020
Crystal Bridges
Bentonville, Arkansas
With this exhibition, Crystal Bridges will explore its namesake material as both a status symbol and an ingredient of art. Pieces from around the world and throughout the centuries will be presented, reflecting crystal's timeless appeal.

"Repair and Design Futures"
Through June 30, 2019
RISD Museum
Providence, Rhode Island
Mending is as familiar as human practices can be, common to anyone who has owned an article of clothing long enough for it to split or wear. RISD's exhibition takes an expansive view of the concept of repair, applying it to everything from the stitching-together of a sleeve to overcoming of global differences.

"Dead Nuts: A Search for the Ultimate Machined Object"
July 27 – December 1, 2019
Museum of Craft and Design
San Francisco, California
In 2009, a question was asked in an online forum: What is "the ultimate machined object"? This exhibition takes the question as its foundation and presents the pillars of human technological advancement – from the wheel to the microprocessor – side by side.

"Striking Gold: Fuller at 50"
September 7, 2019 – April 5, 2020
Fuller Craft Museum
Brockton, Massachusetts
In honor of its golden anniversary, Fuller Craft Museum presents golden artworks – pieces made from the coveted material. The exhibition looks at gold's material properties as well as its associations throughout history and around the world.

"Landlord Colors: On Art, Economy, and Materiality"
June 21 – October 6, 2019
Cranbrook Art Museum
Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
This exhibition looks at lean times (historical periods of social and economic collapse) from Italy in the 1960s through 1980s to Greece following the 2008 financial crisis. It examines how artists respond to these periods, both with materials and in subject matter.

"Transparency: An LGBTQ+ Glass Art Exhibition"
Opening October 12, 2019
Museum of Glass
Tacoma, Washington
Twenty-two artists present "a three-dimensional meditation on queer experience." The exhibition, a collaboration between the Museum of Glass and the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia, is an evolution of a similar exhibition presented by the National Liberty Museum during Pride Month 2017.

"Serious Play: Design in Midcentury America"
May 5 – August 25, 2019
Denver Art Museum
Denver, Colorado
Midcentury design in America has received its deserving share of adulation, but this exhibition – a continuation of one started at the Milwaukee Art Museum last September – looks at the celebrated era through the lens of playfulness, a spirit that enlivened the designers' works.

"Jun Kaneko"
June 15 – July 27, 2019
Locks Gallery
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The iconic, large-scale ceramic artist and ACC Gold Medalist presents a survey of his freestanding and wall-hanging work.

"Community Through Making from Peru to New Mexico"
January 6, 2019 – January 5, 2020
Museum of International Folk Art
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Art is not just a product of a community; it is crucial to creating community. This exhibition explores how makers and artists bring communities to life. Over the course of the exhibition, Alas de Agua Art Collective will create a mural.