During this recent Fashion Week I had the opportunity to attend the opening of the Ron Arad: No Discipline exhibit at the MoMa with my friend stylist David Widjaja. Notify jeans, the official sponsor of the exhibit and their sometimes muse Linda Evangelista brought together a delightful mix of personalities on a warm night in Manhattan that drew us away from the hullabaloo of the tents for a delight of the senses. From the spectacular nibbles provided by Yannick Alleno of Paris' Le Meurice with the ample assistance of Daniel Bouled to the unique 20th Century covers of American iconic music by first-time New Yorker French musician Laurent Voulzy the evening attracted a brilliant Francophile community as well as designer Richard Chai, artist Francesco Clemente (who previously created a portrait of the artist), actor Josh Hartnett and author Fran Liebovitz who held court in the garden.
Fast Company’s Ken Carbone’s review brings up many salient points about this stunning presentation by MoMa curators Paola Antonelli and Patricia Juncosa Vecchierini: In retrospect, this work is impressive but it feels oddly out of place in the world today. Its material extravagance seems in stark contrast to the present societal mood of making do with less, and risks feeling irrelevant….Design is at its best when this level of invention, creativity and craft is harnessed to address the needs of the many rather than the indulgence of the few.
From the Museum of Modern Art: Ron Arad: No Discipline : Ron Arad stands out among the most influential designers of our time for his daredevil approach to form, structure, technology, and materials in work that spans the disciplines of industrial design, sculpture, architecture, and mixed-medium installation….For nearly three decades, Arad has countered the traditional separation of the roles of architect, designer, and artist. Prominent in art and design communities while keeping a foot in industrial mass production, he has inspired a new generation of designers in many fields to adopt hybrid practices that have the flexibility to match today’s shifts in design applications. His work has been imitated, idolized, feverishly discussed, and criticized, but never ignored.
Ron Arad: No Discipline celebrates the designer’s interdisciplinary and “no-disciplinary” spirit. Physical concepts are traced through works in different materials and scales, and objects are grouped in families based on a shared form, material, technique, or structural idea. The exhibition culminates in Cage sans Frontières, Arad’s giant structure that cradles all the other works.
The exhibit includes an insightful catalog of conversations with the artist created by Notify, which includes wonderful snippets of thought behind his work an inspiration. More on that to come. ( nstallation view of Ron Arad: No Discipline at The Museum of Modern Art. Photo: Jason Mandella) for a video on the artist:
nstallation view of Ron Arad: No Discipline at The Museum of Modern Art. Photo: Jason Mandella) for a video on the artist: