Museum of Arts and Design Introduces New Initiative in Partnership with Benjamin Moore & Co.

Program Introduces New Art Works Installed at Unexpected Locations throughout the Museum

New York, NY (July 10, 2009)

Continuing to introduce innovative art commissions at its recently opened facility, the Museum of Arts and Design announced today the launch of a new partnership with Benjamin Moore & Co., establishing a special commissioning initiative: Art Encounters.

Art Encounters commissions artists to paint and transform the Museum’s stairwells, creating opportunities to exhibit art in unusual locations throughout the twelve floor building. Artist Mary Temple is the first artist to participate in the program. Each artwork will remain four to six months at the Museum.

Mary Temple creates illusions of light by applying latex paint to walls and wood stain to floors. Her commission, First Week, is a painted trompe l'oeil installation which features a shard of delicate light with shadows of the trees that surround the Museum and is based on a visit the artist made to the museum in early spring. Regarding her utilization of trompe l’oeil, the artist has said, “By puzzling the physical senses, the painting celebrates the pleasure of trying to understand those things just outside the grasp of physical intelligence.” First Week, installed at the east landing of the 4th floor stairwell, will be on view until December 30, 2009. Two other artists who will participate in Art Encounters are sculptor Jackie Ferrara and painter Odile Donald Odita.

“We like to surprise our visitors by showing art in unexpected locations within the Museum,” states Holly Hotchner the Museum’s Nanette L. Laitman Director. “These new art works will draw visitors to areas in the Museum they would otherwise not explore, adding to the active use of our great, new facility. Our stairwells are a perfect “canvas” for these distinctive artistic expressions. We are grateful to partner with Benjamin Moore & Co., a partnership that emphasizes creativity and innovation, and we look forward to a magical transformation of our stairwells.”

“Benjamin Moore is thrilled to support the Museum of Art and Design’s vision of showcasing art in distinctive ways, in unexpected places,” noted Dan Calkins, Benjamin Moore’s Market General Manager. “And our paint is the perfect creative and color delivery medium to allow for this artistic expression. We hope all visitors will uncover these innovative surprises.” 

A vital part of the Museum’s mission is to continue its commitment to working with living artists through its programs and exhibition. The Museum provides opportunities to exhibit newly commissioned work at the Museum’s galleries and in the Open Studios, the Museum engages contemporary artists to share creative processes with visitors.

Art Encounters will be a valuable addition to the Museum’s program of installing art at unexpected places throughout the Museum. Currently these include Ruth Duckworth’s Untitled, 1991, an abstract ceramic wall relief installed at the lobby adjacent to the Museum’s theater (a gift of the artist, Thea Burger, and Howard Oberlander); El Anatsui’s Soleme, a shimmering tapestry made entirely of foil from cast‐off aluminum bottle tops (a promised gift of Aviva and Jack Robinson) and Olga de Amaral’s wall hanging, Tierra y Oro #11 (a gift of Arlene and Harvey Caplan). Installed in the Store and the Museum’s foyer are two crystal chandeliers, Yves Behar’s Mini Voyage and Tord Boontje’s Blossoms, both originally designed for the Swarovski Crystal Palace. In the windows of the 3rd floor stairwells, the Museum showcases its splendid collection of goblets by makers including Dale Chihuly, Lino Tagliapietra, Beth Lipman and others, and on the 2nd floor stairwell Judith Schaechter’s Seeing is Believing, a site‐specific stained‐glass installation, is permanently installed.

The Museum’s inventive exhibitions and programs have brought nearly 300,000 visitors to the Museum since its grand opening in September, 2008, including first‐time visitors from throughout the region as well as cultural tourists from around the world, and has grown its membership to include 3,500 new members. The Museum has collaborated with a range of distinguished artists and designers, allowing visitors to watch, learn and hear from such luminaries as musician Wynton Marsalis, authors
Salman Rushdie and Adam Gopnik, designers Karim Rashid, Hella Jongerius, Jonathan Adler and Paula Scher, and artists Marek Cecula and Klaus Moje, among others.

Since opening in its new location, the Museum has been acknowledged with numerous awards, including the prestigious Merit Award from the AIA New York, honoring architect Brad Cloepfil’s (AWA) design of the new building; and graphic design from the Art Directors Club and the Association of American Museums. The Arts & Business Council honored the Museum with an Encore Award for its outstanding corporate partnership with Steelcase Inc.; The Store at MAD was named “Retail Store of the Year” by Chain Store Age.

Art Encounters is a special commission made possible by Benjamin Moore & Co.


ABOUT THE ARTIST

Best known for her large‐scale trompe l’oeil installations, Mary Temple’s work has been exhibited in major national museums as well as abroad. In the past year those venues have included the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, MASS MoCA, The Mattress Factory in Pittsburgh, PA, Western Bridge in Seattle and the Chateau de Chamarande Contemporary Art Center in France. Other venues include the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Ridgefield CT, the Sculpture Center, The Jewish Museum, The Contemporary Museum, Baltimore, Smack Mellon, Brooklyn, Dexia Hall Exhibition Space, Luxembourg, Artenova‐Fuoriuso, Pescara, Italy among others. Temple’s work has been featured in Art in America, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, Artforum.com, and The Brooklyn Rail. Born in Phoenix Arizona, Temple attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 1999 and received her BFA and MFA from Arizona State University. She lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.


ABOUT BENJAMIN MOORE & CO.

Benjamin Moore & Co., a Berkshire Hathaway company, was founded in 1883 and this past year celebrated its 125th Anniversary. One of the country’s leading manufacturers of premium quality residential, commercial and industrial maintenance coatings, its products are distributed via a network of independent paint and decorating retailers located throughout North America. Benjamin Moore has been a longstanding steward of the environment with a relentless commitment to sustainable manufacturing practices plus the ongoing development of the most eco‐responsible formulations possible. Its portfolio of Green Promise™ products continues to grow and includes Aura, über‐
performance low‐VOC paint; Natura Zero‐VOC Interior Paint; and EcoSpec Zero‐VOC Paint for commercial interiors.

ABOUT THE MUSEUM OF ARTS AND DESIGN

The Museum of Arts and Design explores how craftsmanship, art, and design intersect in the visual arts today. The Museum focuses on contemporary creativity and the ways in which artists and designers from around the world transform materials through processes ranging from the handmade to cutting edge technologies.
The Museum’s exhibition program explores and illuminates issues and ideas, highlights creativity and craftsmanship, and celebrates the limitless potential of materials and techniques when used by creative and innovative artists. MAD’s permanent collection is global in scope and focuses on art, craft, and design from 1950 to the present day.
At the center of the Museum’s mission is education. The Museum’s dynamic new facility features classrooms and studios for master classes, seminars, and workshops for students, families and adults. Three open artist studios engage visitors in the creative processes of artists at work and enhance the exhibition programs. Lectures, films, performances and symposia related to the Museum’s collection and topical subjects affecting the world of contemporary art, craft and design are held in a renovated 150‐seat auditorium.

The Museum of Arts and Design explores how craftsmanship, art, and design intersect in the visual arts today. The Museum focuses on contemporary creativity and the ways in which artists and designers from around the world transform materials through processes ranging from the handmade to cutting edge technologies. The Museum’s exhibition program explores and illuminates issues and ideas, highlights creativity and craftsmanship, and celebrates the limitless potential of materials and techniques when used by creative and innovative artists. MAD’s permanent collection is global in scope and focuses on art, craft, and design from 1950 to the present day. At the center of the Museum’s mission is education. The Museum’s dynamic new facility features classrooms and studios for master classes, seminars, and workshops for students, families and adults. Three open artist studios engage visitors in the creative processes of artists at work and enhance the exhibition programs. Lectures, films, performances and symposia related to the Museum’s collection and topical subjects affecting the world of contemporary art, craft and design are held in a renovated 150‐seat auditorium.

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Contact

Claire Laporte
Chief External Affairs Officer

Christina Allan
Communications Associate

Tel: 212.299.7737
Email: press@madmuseum.org