Thomaï Serdari on Fine Arts & Luxury
Kiki Smith. Frogs. Courtesy of Pace Wildenstein.

Kiki Smith. Frogs. Courtesy of Pace Wildenstein.












It turns out New York’s best-kept secret is the Museum of Art and Design (MAD) on Columbus Circle. (See entry at: New York: New Art from the Venice Biennales on show from February 14 –through June 10, 2012 is a stunner. Sculptural pieces created as a result of the collaboration between famous artists and the workshop of Adriano Berengo impress with their unpredictability, playfulness, and wit. Berengo, founder of Venice Projects, has worked with an international roster of artists, architects, and designers to produce a myriad of delightful pieces that made it to the Venice Biennales of 2009 and 2011.

If you are familiar with the history of Venetian glass you will appreciate the degree of innovation applied in executing each one of these pieces and the experimentation that has resulted in a variety of striking shapes and compositions. The tactility of the pieces is another novel trait, usually not associated with glass. But on MAD’s fourth floor, every single frog, chandelier fragment, or block of frosted mass begs for the visitor to touch it, pick it up, and take it home. Before attempting anything of the sort, look for the name of the gallery that represents the artist. Or head down to the museum store to pick up the catalog that explains in greater detail the intricacies of working with glass and the challenges of artistic direction between artist and artisan.

© Thomaï Serdari