The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD), (www.madmuseum.org) is one of my favorite museums in Manhattan. This Museum displays and documents contemporary and historic innovation in craft, art, and design.

MAD is the place to go to see what lurks in the creative minds of those creative visionaries who think outside the proverbial box.

The Museum of Arts and Design

The Museum of Arts and Design. Photo: Eric Scott.

MAD Has An Ideal Location
MAD is located at 2 Columbus Circle, a small, trapezoidal lot on the south side of Columbus Circle, near West 59th Street, between  7th and 8th Avenues. Located a few steps away from Central Park, the neighborhood is a bustling thoroughfare of tourists and residents alike.

I have very fond memories of this area, having once lived nearby on Central Park South, while I attended the Art Students League of New York, on West 57 Street. Now, when my friend comes to stay at her pied-à-terre on Central Park South, we always include a visit to MAD.

Museum of Arts and Design

Joyce J. Scott, Ribbon Dancers, 2009, Woven glass beads. Courtesy of Mobilia Gallery, Cambridge, MA.

MAD Encourages Creativity Across Many Fields
Unlike larger museums in the city, MAD is the perfect size if you want to explore the entire contents of a museum  in one visit. You will feel thoroughly satiated and inspired by its array of beautiful and unusual objects.

MAD is known for its encouragement and promotion of contemporary creative individuals across creative fields. It presents talents of artists, designers, and artisans who apply the highest level of ingenuity and skill to their work.

There is always a new jewelry artist to discover. For example, “Maryland to Murano: Necklaces and Sculptures by Joyce J. Scott” is an upcoming exhibition that opens on September 30, 2014.

The Museum of Arts and Design

Robert, the restaurant located on the 9th floor of the Museum of Arts and Design.

Dining at Robert Offers Awe-Inspiring Views
On your visit to MAD, you may want to dine at Robert, a modern American restaurant located on the ninth floor of the Museum. It has extraordinary views of Columbus Circle and Central Park. Here you may enjoy a meal in the dining room or relax with cocktails in the lounge next to a baby grand piano.

Hours of operation include: Brunch (Weekends Only): [11:00][3:00]; Lunch: Daily: 11:30am – 3:00pm; Small Plates, Drinks and Desserts: [3:00][5:30]; Dinner: Wed-Sat: 5:30pm – 12:00am; Sun-Mon: 5:30pm – 10:00pm; Tue: [5:30] – 11:00pm.

Museum of Arts and Design

Teaset “Victoria” no. 12, 2008, Porcelain. Museum purchase with funds provided by the Howard Kottler Endowment for Ceramic Art, 2008. Photo: Matthew J. Cox.

View Unique Designs of Ordinary Objects
Exhibits and collections at MAD may make you think about how everyday common objects, such as silverware, vases, jewelry, and furniture are designed.

They may raise your awareness about form and function and the creative mind of the designer behind them. Your visit may even inspire you to go home and upcycle an old chair with a new surprising fabric or recompose and modernize a vintage piece of jewelry.

Museum of Arts and Design

Installation view from ‘NYC Makers: The MAD Biennial’ opening night, June 30, 2014. Photo by Gulshan Kirat.

The MAD Biennial is A New Exhibition
In July 2014, MAD opened NYC Makers: The MAD Biennial, a diverse exhibition that showcases work of approximately 100 highly inventive individuals who create objects or environments that shape our everyday lives. The exhibition runs through October 12, 2014.

This exhibition displays exquisite workmanship and skill by artisans, artists and designers, as well as those who operate behind the scenes. Many special events are planned throughout the duration of the exhibition, including fashion shows, performances, social practice projects, and culinary explorations.

Support for NYC Makers: The MAD Biennial is provided by Autodesk; AlixPartners; Jack and Shirley Silver; Zabar’s; Tiffany & Co.; Dan Greenberg and Susan Steinhauser; Goldman Sonnenfeldt Foundation; Siegelson, New York; Ken Spitzbard; and Jill Bokor and Sanford Smith. In-kind support for the exhibition has generously been provided by Maharam. Additional thanks to KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, the official airline of MAD.

Museum of Arts and Design

Museum of Arts and Design. Photo credit: Eric Scott.

How The Artists Were Selected
Participating artists in this exhibition were nominated by a pool of over 300  New York City-based cultural leaders and civic figures from a range of trades and disciplines, including museum curators, choreographers, academics, chefs, musicians, and journalists.

The final participants were selected by a jury led by Glenn Adamson, Director of MAD, and Jake Yuzna, curator of the exhibition.

Museum of Arts and Design

The Store at the Museum of Arts and Design. Photo Credit: Laslo Regos.

Visit The Store
A trip to MAD would not be complete without browsing in its museum shop. The “Store” offers a plethora of design objects, jewelry, home and fashion accessories. They make interesting gifts or a token reminder of your unique visit.

Visit The Artists’ Studios
Another outstanding feature of the museum is the placement of Artist Studios, on the 6th floor. This area has been designed as an educational space to stimulate dialogue among artists, designers, and the public. Visitors are welcome to talk to artists and observe as they work on their projects. Hours are Tuesday – Sunday: 10:00 am – 1:30 pm & 2:30 pm – [5:00] pm; Thursday and Friday: 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm.

Artists May Submit Their Art
Artists, artisans and designers may submit their art work to the Museum. Visit the FAQ page of the Museum’s website to obtain detailed submission requirements.

Museum of Arts and Design
www.madmuseumcom
2 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019
Hours of the Museum of Arts and Design are: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm; Thursday and Friday from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm. Closed Mondays and major holidays.

To read the Luxe Beat Magazine version of this article click on the title The Museum of Arts and Design Offers An Array of Beautiful Objects