Museum of Arts and Design in New York City

by Denise Marie

Museum of Arts and Design is located on Columbus Circle in New York, New York. It is formerly known as the American Craft Museum and is one of the national icons of New York. The Museum of Arts and Design or MAD focuses on the creativity of art and craft of today through digital and artisanal processes. The museum is an accredited museum by the American Association of Museums.

More than 250,000 tourists from all around the world and locally visit the museum each year. The museum was found by the American Craft Council in the 1950’s. The museum features four floors that were designed by Roche-Dinkeloo. The museum hosts many collections, exhibitions, workshops and other programs for visitors to learn the trade of art.

History of the Museum of Arts and Design
The museum was founded in 1956 and relocated in 1986 to West 53rd Street. It was then when it was renamed after its founders to The American Craft Museum. Aileen Osborn Webb played the role of putting together the craft museum. The primary mission was to attract the public’s attention with the creativity of craft. It wasn’t until 2002 when the museum changed its name to what it is today and moved to its current location in 2008 opening to visitors.

For more than half a century the museum has been the country’s leading institute for dedicating collections and exhibitions of all modern creations such as glass, clay, metal, wood and fiber for art lovers and visitors from all around the world. The milestone was set more than 70 years ago when Aileen Osborn Webb founded the American Craftsmen’s Council in 1942.

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Collections and Exhibits
Visitors have the opportunity to view some of the most mesmerizing collections in the world. There are more than 2000 objects that contain furniture, jewelry, clay, fiber and other items. Every object is considered an extensive piece of art for its innovation and skill coming from American designers and designers from other parts of the world including Europe and Asia. Together with new advanced technologies and the internet, 95% of the permanent collections are now accessible to view online.

With the permanent collections at the museum there are also exhibitions to explore when visiting such as Daniel Brush; a professor, writer and artist that has an astonishing mind for exceptional sculpture paintings and is a master when it comes to craftsman’s hands, or past exhibitions like Dead or Alive. This exhibition showcased more than 30 international artists who renovated organic materials into sculptures that were once living organisms such as plant materials, feathers and silkworm cocoons. Click here to read more on Museum of Arts and Design.

Visiting the Museum
The museum is conveniently located for accessibility from all parts of New York. It is open daily with hours varying on certain days. It is accessible for visitors that need wheelchair assistance. Visitors with disabilities are top priority as MAD prides itself on providing accessibility for visitors in need. Guided and personal tours are available. You can plan your visit and book your tour on the website or by calling in advance.


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