LOOT: MAD About Jewelry, annual five-day exhibition and sale of contemporary art jewelry, with all proceeds benefiting the Museum’s programs and exhibitions. Now in its 18th edition, LOOT remains the only event in North America to provide the public with the opportunity to meet and directly acquire contemporary pieces from the most skilled, innovative, and creative jewelry artists working globally today. Open to the public from April 17 through April 21, this year’s LOOT features a curated selection of jewelry by thirty-five international emerging and established artists.
“The 2018 artists we invited stood out for their inspiring craftsmanship and inventiveness,” said LOOT Curator Bryna Pomp. “The jewelry featured incorporates a wide range of remarkable non- traditional materials, from crocheted textiles, ecologically tie-dyed silk, felt, leather, and resin to 3D-printed nylon, titanium, safety pins, bicycle tires, X-ray film, papier-mâché, and wood.”
LOOT 2018 welcomes thirty-five artists from fifteen countries, most of whom have never been shown in New York. In addition to artists from Argentina (2), Denmark (2), France (5), Germany (2), Greece (3), Israel (1), Italy (4), Japan (1), Romania (1), South Korea (1), Spain (1), Switzerland (1), United Kingdom (8), and the United States (2), LOOT will feature an artist from Thailand for the first time in the event’s history.
LOOT: MAD About Jewelry reflects the Museum of Arts and Design’s commitment to the exploration of materials and process, as well as its long-standing presentation of jewelry as an art form. MAD is the only American museum with a gallery dedicated to the display of both temporary jewelry exhibits and its own collection of contemporary and modern studio and art jewelry.
One of the evening highlights was Shannon R. Stratton’s, Chief Curator of the Museum of Arts and Design (MAD), announcement that artists Isabelle Molénat and Sarran Youkongdee have been awarded the third annual LOOT Acquisition Prize, on the occasion of the eighteenth edition of LOOT: MAD About Jewelry. LOOT presents a cross section of the most exciting cutting-edge art jewelry designs, while offering the public a rare opportunity to purchase pieces from and to meet some of the most skilled creators in the field. This year’s prize will result in the acquisition of two jewelry works, Isabelle Molénat’s Collection Knots Necklace (2018) made of silk and polypropylene and Sarran Youkongdee’s Siam Rattikarn (2017) made of Felt, brass, pearl, for the Museum’s collection. Awarded by a jury, the LOOT Acquisition Prize seeks to recognize a LOOT jewelry artist whose work reflects a maturity in artistry and concept; exhibits both a superior and experimental understanding of materials and form; and demonstrates expertise in technique and execution.
The LOOT 2018 Chair is Marsy Mittlemann, and fashion designer Dennis Basso joined the Opening Benefit Host Committee, which also included Iris Apfel, Davina Benshetrit, Andi Potamkin Blackmore, Noreen Buckfire, Marian C. Burke, Kathy Chazen, Caroline Blackman Coakley, Michele Cohen, Paolo Costagli, Jessica Kagan Cushman, Gino Di Geso, Patti Dweck, Joan Hornig, Ann Kaplan, Judith Leiber, Shari Siadat Loeffler, Ella McHugh, Robert Lee Morris, Rebecca Moses, Linda Plattus, Polina Proshkina, Angela Sun, Barbara Tober, Isabel and Ruben Toledo, Kay Unger, and Barbara Waldman.
Previous recipients of the LOOT Award include fashion icon Iris Apfel, collector Barbara Berger, jewelry designer Joan Hornig, fashion designer Kay Unger, and artists Joyce Scott and Axel Russmeyer.
ABOUT THE LOOT ACQUISITION PRIZE WINNERS
Textile jewelry designer Isabelle Molénat lives and works in Toulouse, France. More than ornaments, she considers her jewels to be messengers, carrying stories about our heritage and linking us to other times. Her “Knots” collection represents the tying and resolution of these links, to understand their meaning and impact. Molénat sees the process of creation as an interplay between technique and chance: the technique represents the past, while the chance represents the present. She works in silk and eco-prints her fabric using dye from carefully selected plants, which produce tannins that change through the seasons. Molénat uses the dyed silk to make sheathed ribbons, which she then weaves to create wearable textile sculptures.
Thai jeweler Sarran Youkongdee began his jewelry practice in 2008. Inspired by the rich culture and heritage of his birth country, he creates art to wear, characterized by flowers and an artistry that pays tribute to women past and present. His creations are amalgamations of elaborate designs and royal handicrafts from the past, made with contemporary materials. Deeply interested in women’s role in Thai society, he combines modern beauty and ancient wisdom to create pieces that speak to women of all generations.
ABOUT THE MUSEUM OF ARTS AND DESIGN
The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) champions contemporary makers across creative fields and presents the work of artists, designers, and artisans who apply the highest level of ingenuity and skill. Since the Museum’s founding in 1956 by philanthropist and visionary Aileen Osborn Webb, MAD has celebrated all facets of making and the creative processes by which materials are transformed, from traditional techniques to cutting-edge technologies. Today, the Museum’s curatorial program builds upon a rich history of exhibitions that emphasize a cross-disciplinary approach to art and design, and reveals the workmanship behind the objects and environments that shape our everyday lives. MAD provides an international platform for practitioners who are influencing the direction of cultural production and driving twenty-first-century innovation, and fosters a participatory setting for visitors to have direct encounters with skilled making and compelling works of art and design.