Treat yourself to a museum this month! Grab an exhibit exploring the work of German architect Jürgen Mayer H. in Chicago, or of architectural historian Esther McCoy in Los Angeles. Visit the Met in New York and marvel at the works of master cabinetmaker Duncan Phyfe, or visit the Huntington Library in Southern California and watch furniture from mid sized craftsman Sam Maloof. If you’re looking for ways to become inspired or simply enjoy getting out amid other layout lovers, this really is our listing of things to do around the nation this month.
EXHIBIT — Through Jan. 22, 2012
Jürgen Mayer H.: Wirrwarr
The Art Institute of Chicago
111 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL
Explore among the lesser famous obsessions of Berlin-based architect Jürgen Mayer H.: Keywords and amounts encrypted into patterns. On display through the month is an exhibit showcasing pages from his limited-edition large-format volume Wirrwarr (which means”chaos” in German). For more than a decade, Mayer H. has thoughtfully collected hundreds of envelopes lined with intricately patterned information sheets which conceal its contents. For the builder, the patterns have formed a continued curiosity into the connection between design, communications and new technology. Mayer H. is famous for his sculptural, honeycomb-like buildings, including the Court of Justice in Hasselt, Belgium (pictured). The building’s decorative façade used computer-generated patterns as the basis for a perforated steel layout, bridging the demand for private space, and transparency.
EXHIBIT — Through Jan. 30, 2012
The House which Sam Constructed: Sam Maloof and Art from the Pomona Valley, 1945–1985
The Huntington Library
1151 Oxford Road, San Marino, CA
Working with the 1950s Alta Loma, Calif., home of Sam Maloof (1916-2009) as a central metaphor, watch how the furniture of this mid-century craftsman has led to the development of art in Southern California. The exhibition comprises more than 100 works that shed light on the development of a creative community of painters, sculptors, ceramists, enamelists, fiber artists and many others in L.A. County’s Pomona Valley. Highlights include Maloof’s iconic handmade furniture including a radically abstract”string” seat, along with his take on the classic rocking seat. Maloof was leader in the American studio furniture movement constituting the aesthetics of handmade over mass production; his works shine as superbly designed sculptural forms.
PANEL — 7 p.m. Jan. 12, 2012
Blurring The Lines: Between Art, Architecture, and Design
The Theater at Museum of Arts and Design
2 Columbus Circle, New York, NY
Combine four creative panelists as they discuss how young American designers’ professions are being introduced in galleries instead of showrooms. The dialog will include how collectors are commissioning interiors and furnishings to match their artwork collections. Panelists include Minneapolis-based designer Matt Olson of RO/LU, New York-based architect Rafael de Cárdenas, Rauschenberg Foundation’s Executive Director Christy MacLear, and collector Adam Lindemann.
The panel will be moderated by Felix Burrichter, creator and editor of PIN–UP Magazine. $12 general / $10 members and students. Buy tickets on the web, or telephone -LRB-800-RRB- 838-3006.
EXHIBIT — During January 29, 2012
Sympathetic Seeing: Esther McCoy along with the Heart of American Modernist Architecture and Design
MAK Center for Art and Architecture at the Schindler House
835 North Kings Road, West Hollywood, CA
On display at the end of this month at the MAK Center is an exhibition highlighting the extraordinary Assortment of work by architectural historian Esther McCoy (1904–1989).
Journey throughout her career through photographs, drawings, texts, videos and music interviews which catch her job as an activist journalist in the 1930s covering honest labor practices and Los Angeles slum clearances, then throughout the Arts & Architecture’s mythical Case Study House program and her firsthand viewpoints of mid-century modernism because it had been created.
Sympathetic Seeing is part of Pacific Standard Time: Art in L.A. 1945–1980, a cooperation initiated from the Getty of more than 60 cultural institutions from across Southern California to tell the story of the arrival of this L.A. art scene.
EXHIBIT — January 6 — May 6, 2012
Duncan Phyfe: Master Cabinetmaker in New York
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY
Journey via a comprehensive retrospective exhibition celebrating famous Nyc cabinetmaker Duncan Phyfe (1770-1854). Organized chronologically, it is possible to see examples of the best-known furniture layouts based on the English design style of Thomas Sheraton, the opulent antique style of the 1820s, along with his sleek, minimalist Grecian Plain designs of the 1830s and 1840s. More than 100 works from private and public collections across the United States will be on screen; highlights include Phyfe’s own instrument chest and furniture produced in his Fulton Street workshops which once stood on the site of the former World Trade Center.
The following free educational programs will be provided on Jan. 22 in connection with the display: Classic Design: Duncan Phyfe and Historical Reproduction; Selling the Style: Business Versions of American Craftsmen; and Live Carving and Sketching Demonstrations.
More layout events: Dec. 9 – Jan. 13, 2011, Dec. 23 – Jan. 27, 2012, 5 Best January Occasions
What’s on your calendar this season? Let us know about your favorite upcoming design events below!