Craft and Design in LA


Decorative Arts Trust Special Program

December 2–3, 2022 

Please join us for a two-day exploration of LA’s exciting craft and design community. Our program begins with a chance to tour LACMA’s special exhibition Scandinavian Design and the United States, 1890–1980, the first to examine the considerable exchanges between the United States and Nordic countries. We also enjoy the opportunity to check out new installations at the Craft in America Center and The MAK Center for Art and Architecture. Delving into the contemporary scene, we plan to visit two respected artists and designers. Furthermore, Trust members in LA have graciously invited participants to their home for a reception on Friday evening. This is not one to miss! 


Friday, December 2, 2022

Our program begins at LACMA with a tour of Scandinavian Design and the United States, 1890–1980 led by curator Bobbye Tigerman. The long-awaited and highly anticipated exhibition presents a new international story, featuring accounts of Scandinavian designers who immigrated to the United States, Americans who studied or worked in Nordic countries, the ambitious campaigns to market and export Scandinavian design to American consumers, and the American and Nordic figures who championed sustainable and accessible design practice.

Following lunch at LACMA’s acclaimed restaurant, Ray’s, we have the pleasure of seeing another special exhibition Conversing in Clay: Ceramics from the LACMA Collection, with curators Rosie Mills and Staci Steinberger. Their show explores the medium through 14 case studies, placing historical works in visual dialogue with contemporary examples to illuminate symbolic meanings, technical achievements, and resonances throughout time. The exhibition examines how artists working today relate to international artistic traditions of the medium, both through deliberate references to the past and by engaging with aspects of clay’s materiality that have inspired makers over the centuries.

We continue to the MAK Center for Art and Architecture, a contemporary, experimental, multi-disciplinary organization headquartered in an architectural landmark by the Austrian-American architect Rudolph M. Schindler. Founded in 1994, the MAK Center is a satellite of the Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna. The Center’s Director, Jia Yi Gu, welcomes us to the Schindler House, conceived as an experiment in communal living. Schindler created a building in which no two spaces are alike while at the same time seamlessly integrating indoors and out, creating, in his words, “A Real California Scheme.”

Our day concludes with a reception at the home of Trust members, Susan and Roy Meals. Their charming 1920s California Monterey Colonial home and lovingly cultivated gardens make an ideal setting for a festive evening.

Saturday, December 3, 2022

Our morning commences with a greeting from Emily Zaiden, Director of the Craft in America Center, who offers an introduction to a renowned arts organization established to promote and advance original handcrafted work. Best known for an award-winning PBS documentary series, the Craft in America Center also hosts exhibitions, where visitors engage directly with art, artists, and ideas. We have the privilege of meeting ceramic artist Joan Takayama-Ogawa, whose work is the focus of the special exhibition Ceramic Beacon. Known for conveying her candid and prophetic take on contemporary life through playful and witty narratives in ceramics, Ceramic Beacon is the first significant survey of this respected Pasadena-born and based artist’s work.

Moving to LA’s talented community of contemporary artists and designers, KT Glassworks was founded by glass artist Kazuki Takizawa whose state-of-the-art facility produced custom residential and commercial work. Kazuki was born and raised in Hong Kong, went to high school in Bangkok, Thailand, and started working with glass in 2005 at the University of Hawaii at Manoa where he received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in glass art. His work has garnered recognition through prestigious awards, exhibitions, and artist residencies. Takizawa crafts elaborate vessels and installations, each with a unique story.

After lunch, we head to the vibrant arts district of Frogtown and Wiseman Studio, home of David Wiseman, one of the leading American designers of his generation. His work draws inspiration from his fascination with the natural world, global decorative arts traditions, and a reverence for honoring timeless craft techniques. He breathes new life into interiors and environments. Porcelain cherry blossom ceilings, bronze patterned filigree folding screens, and polished marble and terrazzo inlaid furniture affirm and perpetuate the relevance ornament and beauty can play in contemporary architecture and life. His sculpture, furniture, and site-specific installations derive from a deep, personal engagement with the natural world.

Registration Fee: $525 

Membership: You must be a member to register for this event. Members at the Dual level and above may register both household members. Members at the Benefactor level and above may bring a non-member guest.

Hotels and transportation: Please note that accommodations and transportation will be provided for those traveling to Los Angeles from out of town. Rooms will be reserved on an as-requested basis at the W Hotel West Beverly Hills at the rate of $415 (single) or $515 (double). All participants are invited to use the transportation provided, which will depart from and return to the hotel, where parking is available.

Terms and conditions: All cancellations received prior to Friday, November 18 are subject to a full refund less a $50 administrative fee per person. Refunds will not be made for participants canceling after November 18. Proof of COVID-19 vaccination will be required after registration. A negative COVID-19 test result will be required within a few days before the program.


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